Sjaak and Jacqueline Bosma emigrated from the Netherlands in 2016. They decided to buy a dairy farm of 230 Holstein cows in Denmark and directly launched the ProCROSS crossbreeding system across the whole herd. The couple already knew about ProCROSS and its amazing results from the Netherlands. Without hesitation, they inseminated their Holstein cows with Montbéliarde bulls from Coopex and their Holstein heifers with VikingRed bulls.
According to the couple: “The crossbred cows are doing better than the Holsteins; they have better fertility traits, their hooves and legs are also very good, and we have the feeling the cows will be more durable, because their general health is really good.”
“The crossbred cows are doing better than the Holsteins; they have better fertility traits, their hooves and legs are also very good, and we have the feeling the cows will be more durable, because their general health is really good.”
Originally, the previous owner of the farm was using US Holstein bulls, producing high production, tall cows. The first step for the Bosmas was to select Montbéliarde bulls from Coopex, transmitting low to medium size and high production index. The result is a homogeneous, medium-sized herd. Now, they select bulls with high components and continue to breed for less stature. For example, they used Elastar and Fadil, well known proven Montbéliarde bulls from Coopex, and picked VR Hielke and VR Donato from the VikingReds.
The results on fertility traits and longevity are already visible. The age at first calving declined to 24.4 months compared to 27 months when the herd was pure Holstein. And on average, a cow now remains in the herd for 3.3 lactations. The couple know that longevity is an important indicator of profitability for a dairy farm – especially when you also have healthy cows.