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FARM & COUNTRY: EBVs spell success for Alwyn; MARKET REPORTS.

MACHYNLLETH beef producer Alwyn Rees (pictured) swears by the value of using top performing bulls.

His Charolais cross calves are consistently found within the top 5% of prices in Dolgellau's store ring.

It's proof, he says, of the merit of using Charolais bulls with high Estimated Breeding Values (EBVs) on his 35-cow suckler herd at Caeceinach, Pennal.

Mr Rees said: "My father, Gwilym, was a great advocate of Charolais as a terminal beef sire, and we were the first in this area to invest in a first bull in the early 1970s."

Alwyn's 12-cowpedigree Charolais herd is also focused on supplying high Beef Value bulls to the top end of the commercial market. His Pennal bulls have sold for up to 10,000gns.

He said: "Bulls with an EBV within the top 1% for 400-day growth rate leave calves which literally grow the fastest."

Hybu Cig Cymru estimates calves from high value bulls can be worth an extra pounds 40 a head via faster daily liveweight gains, heavier slaughter weights and better killing-out percentages. This has seen more than 400 farmers to register for HCC's Welsh Beef Quality Improvement Project, with funding of 40% up to pounds 2,500 to buy a bull in the top 10% of its breed.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Apr 12, 2007
Words:210
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