True, commercial cow/calf operators are beneficiaries of this progress when they make savvy bull decisions. But still, that commercial rancher is left without a meaningful metric to make selection decisions on replacement females. At the ground level, producers are using much the same approach that has been used for generations to populate and grow their cow herd. We are surrounded by major technological advancements, from our phone to our tractor, and yet heifer selection is often left to the strengths and weaknesses of the eyeball test.
Multiple organizations have stepped in to try and offset this commercial disadvantage. Firms have developed various DNA tests that give an added glimpse to the genetic prowess of females. This has been a huge step forward, however, this glimpse can be a bit too superficial and vague and what is more leaves out two major components of genetic awareness – pedigree knowledge and individual performance.