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January 2020

by the Minnesota/Select Sires Genetics Team

ProfitMAXTM is a complete program offering the expertise of Select Sires’ reproductive and genetic specialists with the goal of maximizing profits in your next best generation. It is not exclusively about beef on dairy; more importantly, it focuses on investing in the best future replacements for your herd. Spending less on the bottom genetics of your herd by using beef semen allows producers to maintain their semen budget and invest more in elite genetics for the top of the herd. Those top females in your herd are what will create the most profit for your operation. Based on the data gathered from genetic audits in many herds, it’s evident that the top genetics outperform the low end genetics through higher milk and component production, overall reproductive performance, less health events and a longer lasting cow. You can see the genetic differences between the top and bottom quartiles and how they are performing in this herd example: Lactation 1 Only

*Average Net Merit$

Once you have identified animals with the highest profit potential using pedigree or genomic data, using an aggressive genetic development plan will provide a solid foundation for creating more profitable herd replacements. Those top end genetics in your next generation are the most important to creating a profitable future. This also means that by only breeding a small, elite group of your females to dairy, you need to ensure that you make the best, most informed decisions. You can ensure the right decisions are being made by utilizing the Igenity genomic test options offered by Minnesota/Select Sires. Previously, when breeding everything to dairy, if mistakes were made, they could be culled. Today, it’s too costly to raise excess

heifers just to cull them and expect to recoup your investment. In order to minimize your risk, it’s important to select the right group of females and use the very best genetics, as well as sexed semen, to ensure the most profitable replacements. Every herd is unique in the amount of risk they’re willing to take. You may be more comfortable using progeny proven bulls to create your best next generation. A proven bull that is very high ranking with a lot of progeny will be a lower risk option than a brand new young sire. But, if genomic sires fit your genetic plan, make sure and utilize a group of bulls rather than one individual bull. Remember that if you work with bulls in the top quartile, they tend to stay near the top, even though there is typically some genetic drift. Another option to consider when utilizing ProfitMax is the NxGENTM program at Select Sires. NxGEN is a membership program that offers early access to the most elite genetics from the Select Sires breeding program. The goal of the program is to provide genetic advantages to our members who are looking for the next level genetic gains. As a member of NxGEN you will have unprecedented, early access to the industry’s most valuable genetics. You’ll find balanced sires with industry-leading values for the most profitable traits. In return, you’ll be able to minimize your herd’s generation interval while maximizing your genetic gain. Whichever path you choose, you can rely on the guidance and expertise of the local team at Minnesota/Select Sires to analyze the data from your herd and tailor the program to fit your goals and create your next most profitable generation.


PRESENTED TO PAUL TVETEN Paul Tveten was recognized by the Minnesota Milk Association at their annual conference. Paul was awarded the first ever “Above and Beyond” Award for his selfless assistance to many dairy farmers last winter during the dairy barn roof collapsing tragedies in SE Minnesota. Paul is an A.I. Service Technician Manager and also provides technical support on our animal health products, reproductive records evaluation and CowManager monitoring system. He grew up on his family’s small dairy farm south of Lewiston, MN. Paul started as a technician for Accelerated Genetics in Winona County in February of 2007 and has been with Minnesota/Select Sires for almost two years now. Paul states that the best part of his job is simple... THE PEOPLE! He loves the relationships he’s formed with customers and colleagues. Paul and his wife, Raeanna, have three children: Kalli, Lyza, and Troy. Congratulations to Paul on this well deserved award!


A GATE CAN MAKE by Chris Sigurdson, General Manager Ensuring the safety of our customer’s animals and our employees is our highest priority. Our Professional Technicians are particularly challenged with navigating through high risk situations every day. Winter road conditions, slippery surfaces, frozen heifer yards, not so docile cows at times and close proximity to the business of the cows all present unique challenges! Our team members understanding and practicing safe behaviors for themselves and your animals is an area we’ve put additional attention to this year.

Your Dairy Can Help In modern freestall situations one of the biggest requested items our Technicians have is a gate. Yes; a gate. If only a dairy could add a gate “the cows and I could be safer and I could cut down on the amount of time needed to corral cows.” Especially when dairies are not able to have cows locked up, a gate can really be a time saver and safety/animal welfare improver. Closing a gate or two allows our Technicians to have back up to manage cows to be bred in a much safer and controlled environment and not run laps with them around freestalls. If you are able, please ask a Technician if there is anything that you can assist with to help them and your animals be safer.

Dairy Animal Care and Quality Assurance Training As a foundational approach to our responsibility in this area, all of our employees that visit a farm completed a set of training modules this past year. You may already be aware of the Dairy Animal Care and Quality Assurance Training (DACQA) programs that are offered, and commonly completed by dairy/beef producers and their employees. This is the program we utilized with our entire farm-visiting team. The main purpose is to keep safety of them and your animals at the forefront of their activities. Each of our employee was awarded a certificate in Animal Health and Non-Ambulatory Cattle Management. Many hours of reviewing videos and taking quizzes helps all of us become newly aware of important areas of safety for people and cows. We will continue to provide on-going training and seek out ways for continuous improvement to ensure the best working environment for our employees and your animals. Teaming with our customers in this area will help us ensure the safest environment we can for your animals and the employees of your local cooperative.


DAIRY HERDS HONORED The Dairy Cattle Reproduction Council (DCRC) presented honors to 24 dairy operations that excel at reproductive efficiency, fertility and well-implemented management procedures during its annual meeting, held Nov. 13-14, in Pittsburgh.



For Wake-Up Holsteins, First Day Formula CR was the solution for mixability and consistency problems they were facing. Wayne, Kris, Andy, Aaron and Eric Houdek milk 430 Holstein cows on their family farm just outside of Caledonia, MN. Four years ago, Houdek’s were searching for a new colostrum replacer that mixed easily and guaranteed the number of IgG’s that entered the calf to give their animals the best start they possibly can. When asked what the return on investment was, Kris answered, “the calves have a faster start and are more alert. We also noticed that their grain intake has increased and rate of gain has also increased.” Kris is also satisfied with the ‘keep-fill’ method that her Minnesota/Select Sires Account Manager maintains; making sure Houdek’s never run out of the product.

More than 100 nominations came from three countries and 11 U.S. states. Farms were nominated by dairy professionals who serve the industry, such as veterinarians, extension specialists and artificial insemination and pharmaceutical company representatives. Following are the Minnesota winners:




Emerald Dairy (Darrin Young) Plainview, MN

Voth Dairy (Brad Voth) Goodhue, MN

Arendt Dairy (Nate Arendt) Mazeppa, MN

Borst Family Dairy (Matt, Larry and Kevin Borst) Rochester, MN

Naatz Dairy (Willie and Karen Naatz - pictured with technician Jeff Augustine below) Mantorville, MN

“Three benefits to using First Day Formula CR are having peace of mind that each calf is getting every single IgG available, the consistency of the product and the fact that it only takes a few minutes to mix and feed the calf, so you can get onto the next job faster,” says Kris. With these benefits of First Day Formula CR, Houdek’s are happy with the product their local cooperative provides knowing their calves are receiving the ultimate start.


SCHOLARSHIP WINNERS Continuing our tradition of supporting the future of the local dairy industry, Minnesota/Select Sires Co-op, Inc. awarded four $500 scholarships to these deserving students: • • • •

Clay Carlson, Pennock, MN Colten Carlson, Pennock, MN Elizabeth Krienke, Lester Prairie, MN Shelby Kuechle, Eden Valley, MN

Applications are due October 31, 2020. If you are interested in applying, contact our office at or 800-7951233.

This awards program, sponsored by Hoard’s Dairyman magazine, recognizes dairy producers whose herds excel in reproduction. DCRC’s Herd Reproduction Award judges considered many criteria when reviewing finalists’ applications, including pregnancy rate, voluntary waiting period, interbreeding intervals, heat detection, conception rate, value of reproduction and culling rate.

6601 Gregory Park Rd, St. Cloud, MN 56301



Products listed are merely distributed by Minnesota/Select Sires, Co-op, Inc. Buyer assumes all responsibility for use, storage, and handling of these products. All claims, representations, and warranties, expressed or implied, are made only by the company responsible for manufacturing and not by Select Sires Inc., its member coops, its agents or employees. In the unlikely event that any of the products shall be proven defective, damages from their use shall exclude consequential damages and be limited to their purchase price. ®First Day Formula is a registered trademark of Select Sires Inc. ®CowManager is a registered trademark of Agis Automatisering. ™gender SELECTed, SelectCROSS, ProfitMAX and NxGEN are trademarks of Select Sires Inc. ®TPI is a registered trademark of Holstein Association USA. ®DWP$ is a registered trademark of Zoetis Inc., its affiliates and/or its licensors. ©2016 Zoetis Inc. All rights reserved.


CHANGED THE WAY WE DAIRY Greg Sabolik of Bred & Butter Dairy near Kensington, MN started using CowManager® in 2015 to stay ahead in the industry. The Sabolik brothers credit the system for its consistency and early heat alerts. “CowManager is a full-time employee notifying us if we have a sick cow or a cow in heat,” says Greg. Their system will often give them health or heat alerts on a cow 12-24 hours before that cow enters the parlor, allowing them to treat or breed that animal right away. Saboliks also utilize the CowManager app on their phone as a convenient tool every day. Greg enjoys the app because it is simple and very easy to use; it doesn’t swamp him with too much data, nor does it slow down his phone. CowManager allows producers to put more time and effort into their cows without having to watch them 24/7. “Walk-throughs are still necessary, but if you miss something, CowManager is right there in your pocket telling you what you missed; that’s the difference between good and great and what will hopefully add to your bottom line profitability in these challenging markets,” says Greg. Greg states, “if you tried it for 30 days and said you didn’t like it, I wouldn’t believe you because it truly has changed the way we dairy and I don’t think we could live without it.”

Profile for Select Sires

Minnesota Select Sires January 2020 Dairy Newsletter  

Minnesota Select Sires January 2020 Dairy Newsletter