Cogent training programme aims to boost breeding skills

Cogent is offering an opportunity for young people to develop their skills in cattle breeding and genetics.

Following the success of last year’s intake, the breeding company is looking for four new faces to apply for the 2009 intakes onto its futures programme.

Young people with a keen interest in dairy cattle breeding are invited to apply. The selected winners will be closely involved in the company’s breeding scheme and genetic selection throughout the forthcoming year.

They will be taught about the sire selection process with the possibility of putting a young sire with their own herd prefix into the Cogent progeny test programme.

The programme enables students to open their eyes to the wider picture of bull selection, says Craig Brown, one of last year’s winners. “I now realise bull selection is a lot more than just picking a good bull family. There are global markets to think about and what they will require going forward.”

“The programme has helped us to understand dairy farmers’ breeding goals, the importance of Profitable Lifetime Index and the genetics of health traits.”

The project helps the company to look after the next generation in the cattle breeding industry, says Alison Millar, Cogent’s marketing manager.

Futures is open to anyone aged 16 to 26. Application should be submitted via the Cogent website at by 29 May 2009.