13 January 2000
‘Inferior bulls threaten beef quality’
BEEF quality is being undermined by pedigree bull breeders unloading inferior stock on the breeding market, reports The Herald.
Peter Hambleton, managing director of an English Midlands marketing co-operative, says some breeders are hiding behind the mystique of bull breeding to sell poor cows to dairy farmers.
He claims this is disrupting the beef finisher of dairy-bred cows.
Mr Hambleton reserves criticism for dairy farmers too. He says they have been too easily persuaded to take cheap, quiet, easy-calving stock bulls, rather than give consideration to genetic merit.
Duncan Pullar, a beef scientist with the Meat & Livestock Commission, takes a different view of the market.
He forecasts increasing specialisation in the national cattle herd to achieve optimum performance.
He says beef breeders are now at the point where they need to specialise, either as producers of terminal sires or maternal sires.
- The Herald 13/01/2000 page 23