Registration Transfers Help Open Markets, Avoid Genetic Defects

Communicating seedstock ownership transfers to the proper breed associations sets the stage for satisfying relationships between commercial cattle producers and their genetic suppliers. Transferred registration certificates and performance records authenticate pedigree, performance and genetic information. Those documents communicate genetic merit, help manage the chances for genetic defects and provide essential information for maximizing returns from seedstock investments.

In addition, transfers often help commercial cattle producers qualify for special marketing opportunities. For example, transferring registered Limousin and Lim Flex® animals’ ownership records puts those buyers on the inside track when it comes to qualifying their preweaned calves for the Strauss Free Raised® veal program. Transfers also aid the North American Limousin Foundation (NALF) in its new sourcing agreement with Laura’s Lean Beef Co. (LLB).

“It pays to seal the deal by requesting transfers,” Frank Padilla, director of member and commercial relations for NALF, advises commercial cattle producers. “Profitable calf crops are the result of known, superior genetics because reputation is important to buyers looking for quality feeder calves and replacement females. Receiving your animals’ registration papers solidifies your reputation as a professional cattle producer who is committed to genetic improvement.”

There is no better way to document superior genetics than to buy registered seedstock and officially transfer their ownership records. Only registered seedstock animals (whether fullbloods, purebreds or hybrids) have reliable genetic and performance information available from their registry organizations. Only registered seedstock have pedigree information officially documented to help manage inbreeding, hybrid vigor (heterosis) and genetic defects.

Kent Andersen, Ph.D., executive vice president at NALF, explained one of the reasons why that is significant.

“When daughters of a sire or group of sires are retained and bred, documented pedigrees allow you to avoid inbreeding and, preferably, generate maternal heterosis,” he said. “Inbreeding often results in declined reproductive fitness, while direct and maternal heteroses are associated favorably and significantly with greater lifetime reproductive efficiency, longevity and pounds of calf weaned per cow exposed.”

Hence, having past and current sires’ pedigrees at hand provides economically meaningful insight when selecting bulls that will go back on retained replacements.

Padilla added that cattle producers are entitled to have the official registration certificates transferred to show ownership when they buy seedstock.

“If you did not take such title to your property in the past, contact your seedstock suppliers today and ask them to begin the process,” he said. “And the next time you purchase a registered animal, be sure to ask the seller to transfer the papers.”

Astute cattle producers know registration certificates add confidence and peace of mind to their seedstock purchases through documented breed composition, sire and dam pedigrees (which offer the ability to check for carriers of genetic defects), breeder contact information, performance measures and genetic predictions. For example, NALF estimates economic merit for 14 traits based on one of the most comprehensive genetic evaluation programs in the beef industry.

“The simple act of transferring ownership links you to your genetics supplier and to the breed association, which provides information, programs and services to help you make the most of your purchases,” Padilla said.

Again using NALF as an example, transfers also help make the following selection and marketing tools available via www.nalf.org on the Web:

• Limousin Exchange marketplace for bulls, females and feeder calves;

• Sire Selector;

• expected progeny difference (EPD) and pedigree lookup; and

• member locator.

Associations, such as NALF, market their breeds to all industry segments; offer performance and commercial programs; conduct applied research; and share timely information about selection, management and merchandising. Registrations and transfers make all of that possible.

The North American Limousin Foundation (www.nalf.org), headquartered in Centennial, Colo., provides programs and services – including genetic evaluation of 5,000 active sires – to more than 4,000 members and their commercial customers. The Limousin breed and its Lim-Flex® hybrid lead the beef industry in muscle-growth efficiency and ideally complement British breeds.

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