Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Value of Central Progeny Test highlighted on 10th birthday

Media Release

29 August 2012

Value of Central Progeny Test highlighted on 10th birthday

Ten years ago, no one envisaged just how valuable Beef + Lamb New Zealand’s (B+LNZ) Central Progeny Test would be to New Zealand’s sheep industry.

Launched in June 2002, the CPT, as it is widely known, helps farmers identify rams that are superior for traits important to their operation. The “how” behind the CPT is surprisingly simple: compare rams by running their progeny in identical environments. In that way, differences between progeny performance can only be due to their genetics, not their environment.

B+LNZ Geneticist Mark Young says the CPT was revolutionary when it was launched, but has become even more important to the industry in the past seven years, since the establishment of SIL’s Advanced Central Evaluation (SIL-ACE).

“During the past 10 years, farmers have become a lot more savvy about how they choose rams. The CPT has played a big part in that change. It’s responsible for terms like ‘meat yield’, ‘FE tolerance’ and ‘number of lambs born’ becoming part of our everyday farming vocabulary.

“The CPT has made rams’ genetic data more relevant to farmers and generated healthy debate about which traits are commercially important.

“And now, through SIL-ACE, we’re able to extract genetic information we’d only dreamed of generating back in 2002. We can find out which flocks are recording different traits – through SIL’s FlockFinder tool – and compare the genetics of animals in different flocks – through SIL’s RamFinder tool. This makes SIL-ACE an incredibly powerful resource for farmers. However, it can only do this thanks to the good old CPT providing critical connections to join up a large number of flocks. Without that, SIL-ACE would be nowhere near as grunty as it is.”

B+LNZ General Manager Farm, Richard Wakelin, says the CPT has four objectives: to identify sources of high-performing rams; develop genetic measures for specific traits; foster links between ram breeders; and provide a genetic resource for improving the profitability of the industry.

“CPT also underpins Ovita’s science programme. I’m not just talking about the high quality of genetic data it provides. I’m also talking about the role it plays in pulling the industry together. Through the CPT, groups whose paths may not have crossed in the past, now work together with common goals such as a determination to see genetic technologies become commercially viable. The CPT is the glue in the equation.”

Over the past decade, 234 rams have been evaluated, with about 20 new rams entering the CPT annually. Ram breeders nominate rams for inclusion and these animals and their progeny are then farmed across three controlled locations: Poukawa in Hawke’s Bay, Ashley Dene in Canterbury and Woodlands in Southland. Every year, the CPT publishes a list of the top 25 rams against key breeding value traits and indexes of overall economic merit.

The Kelso stud has a long history of supplying rams to the CPT. Matt Holden of Kelso describes the CPT as the ultimate level playing field for sires.

“When you measure progeny performance, what you see is what you get and that’s really important. Sometimes there is too much emotion tied up in the breeding of animals. But not with the CPT – it’s totally objective and unbiased.”


About Beef + Lamb New Zealand:
Beef + Lamb New Zealand Ltd is the farmer owned industry organisation representing New Zealand’s sheep and beef farmers. Beef + Lamb New Zealand Ltd invests farmer levies to help develop a growing sheep and beef industry providing sustainable returns for future generations. Beef + Lamb New Zealand has four programmes – Farm, Market, People and Information – to deliver innovative tools and services to support informed decision making, and continuous improvement in market access, product positioning and farming systems for New Zealand’s sheep and beef sector.

© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Civil Contractors: Massive Rebound In Civil Construction Business Confidence

New Zealand’s civil construction industry is riding a massive rebound in post-pandemic business confidence – but this may be undermined by skills shortages, which continue to be the industry’s number one challenge... More>>

Energy: Feeling Our Way Towards Hydrogen - Tina Schirr

Right now hydrogen is getting a lot of attention. Many countries are focusing on producing hydrogen for fuel, or procuring it, or planning for its future use... More>>

Maritime Union: Calls For New Zealand Shipping To Resolve Supply Chain Crisis

The Maritime Union says there needs to be innovative responses to ongoing shipping congestion. Maritime Union of New Zealand National Secretary Craig Harrison says it is essential that New Zealand develops its own shipping capacity... More>>

Housing: New Home Consents Continue To Break Records

A record 44,299 new homes were consented in the year ended June 2021, Stats NZ said today. “The annual number of new homes consented rose again in the June 2021 year, the fourth consecutive month of rises,” construction statistics manager Michael Heslop said... More>>

Real Estate: June Home Transfers Remain High
There were 44,517 home transfers in the June 2021 quarter, the highest June quarter figure since 2016, Stats NZ said today. The number of home transfers was very similar to the March 2021 quarter and was up 18,252 from the June 2020 quarter... More>>

Statistics: Household Saving Falls In The March 2021 Quarter

Saving by New Zealanders in the March 2021 quarter fell to its lowest level in two years after rising sharply in 2020, Stats NZ said today. Increases in household spending outpaced income growth, leading to a decline in household saving from the elevated levels that prevailed throughout 2020... More>>