Average milk yields in UK Holstein herds have fallen for the fourth year in succession, acccording to the latest NMR results. And for the first time in 10 years average fat and protein production have also dropped.


Meanwhile, somatic cell counts have shown a rise again, moving up by 1000 cells/ml to record an average of 205,000 cells/ml. On top of that negative move, calving interval has also increased, with the average time between calvings in recorded Holsteins now standing at 428 days.

Overall the average yield for NMR-recorded Holsteins now stands at 8215kg, 4kg down on the previous 12 months, with fat levels at 3.89%, down from 3.91%, while protein levels were static at 3.22%.

In the other main breeds cell counts fell by 4000 cells/ml in the British Friesians, with Ayrshires seeing a drop of 3000 cells/ml. And their respective calving intervals have also fallen, standing at 402 days and 413 days, respectively.

Guernsey, Swiss, Montbeliarde and MRI herds have all recorded increased production.