An online shop selling rams has been launched to help farmers select the best breeding stock for their system.
Breeding company Innovis has developed the online portal to get farmers away from thinking about an individual ram to selecting rams with performance traits that are important for their farm.
The shop is no different to buying a checked shirt from Next, explained company CEO Dewi Jones.
See also: More news from Livestock Event 2015
“Farmers can view the different product lines and can drill down into the individual ram and their specific traits, such as performance and maternal ability.
“Once they have selected the type of ram they want, they then put a deposit on it.
“Specifics rams are then selected at the end of the month at which point the farmer will be sent an individual ram ID.”
“Farmers can view the different product lines and can drill down into the individual ram and their specific traits, such as performance and maternal ability.”
Dewi Jones, Innovis
Rams will then be delivered to the nearest collection point, which are situated across the country or can be delivered on to farm for an additional fee.
The shop, the first of its kind in the UK, is only available from 8 to 26 July.
There will be more than 200 maternal and meat-sired (terminal) rams available to buy.
On 29 July individual rams will be selected and the farmer notified with their individual ram ID.
Speaking to Farmers Weekly at the Livestock Event, Mr Jones said: “We are only opening the shop for a month as we want to keep some of our rams back to sell at sales.
“However, we may open again in September for ram lambs,” he added.
The shop will feature three maternal lines – the Aberfield, Aberdale and New Zealand Highlander.
Elite maternal sires will retail at £950 and select sires at £750 delivered.
For meat sires there is the Abermax, which has derived from Texel and Charollais and the Primera, which Mr Jones claims is good for farmers who wish to lamb outdoors in an easy care type system.
The meat sires will retail at £850 for elite and £600 for select.
Mr Jones said an online decision tree would be able to help farmers decide which ram is best for their farm.
They can also speak to product reps who will be able to help them select the best type of sire.
He adds: “We are trying to make online purchasing a consultative process so the farmer ends up with a product they want and will meet what they are trying to do.”