19 May 2000

Gene-marked boar promises better returns

A NEW boar containing a genetic fingerprint marker promises to bring improvements in progeny performance worth £1 a finished pig.

Launched by PIC at the Pig and Poultry Fair, GTi-Challenger was the first sireline boar to contain a genetic marker, said the firms marketing manager, Martin Whiting.

"This boar contains a genetic marker for low-fat and high-lean yield. It has been developed using DNA fingerprinting techniques."

Progeny of the boar are guaranteed to inherit the marker genes provided AI is used. In progeny possessing the marker gene, backfat is 0.5mm lower and feed conversion ratio is 0.06 points better than for PICs other lean GTi sires. That gave a total cost benefit of about £1 a finished pig, said Mr Whiting.

"The boar is ideal for producers looking to finish pigs ad lib in large groups and wanting to achieve grading levels of 12mm or less, as required by many abattoir and processor contracts," he added.

Twenty GTi-Challenger boars are at the companys stud and a premium of £1 a dose is being charged for their semen. &#42