Veepro news October 2020
The more beautiful as a heifer, the faster at 100,000 kg of milk
High-pointed heifers reach the milestone of 100,000 kg milk or 10,000 kg fat and protein faster than low-pointed heifers.
This relationship between conformation and lifetime production emerges from an analysis by the  CRV Cooperation of figures of 100- and 10-tonners in the period from2010 to 2019. Cows registered as heifers with 80 points needed 3,185 days to produce 100,000 kg of milk. Cows that received 85 points as a heifer took 135 days less (3050 days). There even is a difference of 332 days between cows that received 76 or 87 points as a heifer. That is about an entire lactation.
Thirty days faster per point
The 10-tonners show the same picture. A 10-tonner, scored as a heifer with 80 points,  achieved an average production of 10,000 kg fat and protein in 4023 days. A heifer with 85 points reached that production 83 days faster.  With the 10-tonners, there is also a gap of 354 production days between a former heifer with 76 and one with 87 points.
For each additional point for overall type, the number of production days up to 100,000 kg decreases roughly by about 25 days, the analysis shows. With ten-tonners, the decrease amounts to about 30 production days per point.
More and more quickly at 100,000 kg
The same analysis also shows that cows are reaching the mark of 100,000 kg of milk more and more quickly. The cows that reached the 100 tons in 1991 took an average of 3,690 days (figure 1). In 2019, the more than 2,400 hundred-tonners only required an average of 3,071 production days, a difference of more than 500 days.
This trend is also visible among the 10-tonners. In 2000, the average number of days to produce 10,000 kg of fat and protein was 4,287 days, while it took 3,954 days for the 10-tonners that passed that mark last year.

Hundred-tonners: still of average build and beautifully uddered
Hundred- and 10-tonners as heifers still score average for type traits with remarkably strong udders. This is evident from a new analysis by CRV.
Chief Inspector Gerbrand van Burgsteden analyzed the data of the nearly 19,000 hundred-tonners and over 1900 ten-tonners that reached that milestone in the past 10 years. Of the cows in his analysis, 12,421 hundred-tonners and 1355 ten-tonners received a type score as a heifer.
Better fore udder attachment and central ligament
The 100-tonners scored an average of 81.9 points as heifers, the 10- tonners scored 82.4 points. For udder, they scored 82.3 and 82.8 points respectively.
The Linear Parts show that the heifers score around average for type traits such as rump, body depth and stature. For the udder traits fore udder attachment, udder cleft and rear udder height, they do score a lot higher, as well as for the leg traits use of legs and rear leg view.
Slightly more emphasis on udder
The type profile of these cows corresponds to that mentioned in a 2001 graduation assignment by René de Wit. "(…..) while we are now almost 20 years later and we are talking about different cows than at the time," says Van Burgsteden. "At most, the emphasis is now slightly more on the udder traits."

Heifers keep up daily production after later insemination
Postponing the first insemination until 200 days after calving does not affect the average daily milk production of heifers. With cows, the average daily production decreases as the lactations are longer.
These are some of the conclusions of the 'Customized lactation' study by Wageningen University and Reasearch on behalf of ZuivelNL.
Wait up to 200 days
The researchers divided 150 cows and heifers from the Dairy Campus Experimental Farm into three groups. In the first group, insemination was started from 50 days after calving, in the second group it was delayed until 125 days, and in the third until 200 days. The animals were followed until the start of the next lactation to research the consequences of an extended lactation. Both production efficiency and health of the animals were observed.
Milk loss at herd level
The results show that inseminating heifers can be delayed up to 200 days after calving without affecting the average daily production. However, it does take longer for animals that are inseminated late in the first lactation before they start a second lactation. Since second-calver cows on average give more milk than heifers, this does mean loss of milk at herd level.
With cows you see effect
With cows, the average daily milk production was lower when inseminated as of 200 days instead of 50 days after calving. Waiting for up to 125 days instead of inseminating at 50 days did not affect the daily milk production. However, in the last six weeks before drying off, the daily production was lower when the insemination was delayed until 125 or 200 days. According to the researchers, this can also be seen as an advantage. These animals are likely to experience less udder pressure during drying off and may have less risk of udder infections in the dry period and at the start of the next lactation.
Delay beneficial for fertility
Cows that are not inseminated before 200 days after calving become in-calf faster than cows that are started at 125 or 50 days after calving. According to the researchers, this can possibly be explained by a higher proportion of regular heats and lower milk production. Cows inseminated from 125 days also had a lower milk production and more regular heats than cows inseminated from 50 days. However, there was no effect on fertility here.
Differences between cows
The researchers suspect that some cows are more suitable for an extended lactation than other cows. The data from the trial will therefore be further analyzed to identify traits that predict the consequences of an extended lactation on production and health for individual cows.

More growth with better water
Poor water quality works negative on the growth and health of the calves. Always use tap water for calf rearing. The use of tap water is better for young calves, which in this first phase lays an important foundation for later achievements.
A calf's daily water requirement is more than 10% of its body weight. Water plays a role in all important physiological processes and is the most important feed component for young calves. Muscles and brains consist for 75% of water, blood for 85%, lungs for 90% and even bones consist for 24% of water. The calf receives moisture through the milk, but that is not enough to meet its needs. Therefore, provide unlimited fresh drinking water to your calves from day 3, preferably in daily portions, so that you can monitor the water intake.
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 Measure feed efficiency with infrared
At the Dairy Campus Experimental Farm, a trial has been started to see whether the feed efficiency of cows can be determined with infrared.
The cows are being filmed with an infrared camera during milking. Also feed intake and milk production data are recorded and eventually combined with each other. The researchers are looking for the infrared characteristic most closely related to feed efficiency.
Feed efficiency is used in the CRV breeding program, for which information with the help of food troughs forms the basis. However, these feed troughs are expensive and therefore of no interest to commercial dairy farms. Infrared technology could be useful for measuring feed efficiency on a larger scale. Infrared cameras are already being used to detect diseases in dairy cattle at an early stage and to estimate the feed efficiency of beef cattle. Infrared radiation is not visible, but all bodies do give off infrared radiation, which can be felt as heat. An infrared camera measures the radiation and makes an image of it. In this way they provide insight into the temperature of cows.

Alfalfa is the most important protein crop in the Netherlands

In total, about 9100 hectares of protein crops are being cultivated in the Netherlands this year, according to the agricultural census of CBS (Statistics Netherlands). This is about half a percent of the total area of agricultural crops. This not only concerns fodder crops, but also green manuring crops and crops for human consumption.
More field beans and lupins
With an area of approximately 7500 hectares, alfalfa is by far the most important crop. Eleven percent of it is organic. Although the number of farms growing alfalfa rose by 55 to 1,165, the total acreage fell by 1 percent. The area of field beans grew by 143 hectares to 1,092 hectares in 2020. The acreage of non-bitter lupins also increased: from 58 to 100 hectares. All in all, the number of hectares of protein crops in Europe is declining, despite the aim to be less dependent on the import of proteins from outside of Europe.
Resting places third countries export breeding and production cattle

For the export of breeding and production cattle to third countries, the use of resting places outside the European Union has been critically examined by the Dutch sector in recent months. This is due to very serious concerns about this from the Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality (ANF) in response to a German report, in which it was stated that travel plans include resting places that do not exist or are of inadequate quality. On the basis of this report, the Ministry of ANF intended to shut down all exports to third countries for good.
Vee&Logistiek Nederland has been able to avert the latter and did subsequently write a report on the use and quality of the resting places outside the EU. Also, in consultation with the NVWA, checklists have been drawn up for resting places outside the EU and accompanying letters have been sent to the relevant veterinary authorities. Herewith the competent veterinary authorities, responsible for the relevant resting places in Russia and Kazakhstan, can guarantee that work is carried out according to EU standards.
During the months of July and August, these resting places and their associated veterinary authorities were contacted and influenced in many different ways, resulting in all documentation being received back in full from the following five Russian resting places: Suski and Sosnovka from the Schmolensk region, OOO Klinger and Stary Buyan from the Samara region and Grozny. The Russian central government, too, has issued guarantees to our government about these five resting places through official correspondence. The check lists for the resting places in Aralsk and Kyzylorda have been returned from Kazakhstan by the Kazakh veterinary authorities. All these documents together have been submitted for approval to the Ministry of ANF and the NVWA.
An action plan has also been written about the use and quality of resting places located outside the EU. The aim of this plan is to develop a system and working method with regard to animal welfare, by the sector itself, which guarantee that the resting places to be used outside the EU meet the EU requirements. And that, when included in the travel plan, these resting places are actually visited for a period of 24 hours, during which the animals are unloaded, cared for, rested, fed and watered.
In this plan, agreements are made about the current and future guarantees for the resting places, the use of reservation certificates, the tracking of the journey through an online real-time GPS tracking system, the use of means of transport, proof that the resting place outside the EU has actually been visited, and about the exporter submitting all documentation to the NVWA after the final destination is reached.
At the beginning of September, the action plan and the questions subsequently posed by the Ministry of ANF, were discussed in a technical consultation between the Ministry of ANF, the NVWA and Vee&Logistiek Nederland. In the short term, further discussions will be held about what sanctions should look like, in case the exporter / transporter does not comply with the agreements set out in the action plan. As soon as an agreement has been reached on this subject, it is up to the Minister to give her final agreement. After which the export can then be resumed.

Lianne van Dongen
Veterinary Director

Veepro movie about Dutch cow/
Dutch cow export


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