Milk and Butterfat Recording
If Herd book activities are the raison d'Ítre of any breeders' society then Milk-recording is the backbone of breeding dairy cattle. The founding fathers of ICBA recognized the importance of complete and reliable data on the production of each cow every year. More than one genetic theory has evolved over time, triggering changes in breeding methods every so often, but always relying on the hard facts as they emerge from regular monthly milk-recording.

               
BALADI COW SYRIAN COWDUTCH COW
In the early days of dairy cattle breeding in Israel, selection took two paths concomitantly: one in search of the superior breed to be continued, either purebred or for outcrossing common breeds; the other by selecting outstanding brood cows for the perpetuation of desirable characteristics, besides high yields of milk and butterfat. The following tables are intended to shed some light on the subject.


Results of Milk Recording 1929/ 30, according to breeds.

Breed
    Cows
    no.
    Age
    yrs
   Days
    in
   milk
    Milk
    kg
    Fat
    %
   Fat
    kg
   Milk
    kg/d
       Part of
   population
       %
Local (Baladi)
Syrian (Shami)
Crosses, undefined
Dutch x Baladi
Dutch x Syrian
Baladi x Syrian
Dutch
39
88
53
34
90
19
13
8.4
8.0
4.8
3.7
3.0
5.1
4.1
213
268
289
268
272
234
342
1266
2820
2748
1924
2962
1256
4217
4.11
3.95
3.89
4.05
3.65
4.30
3.30
52
113
107
78
108
54
139
5.9
10.7
9.5
6.7
10.9
5.4
12.3
11.6
26.2
15.8
10.1
26.7
5.7
3.9
336 5.5 269 2541 3.86 98 9.5 100.0

From 1934 onwards, milk-recording in Israel gained increasing popularity as made evident by the following table. The immediate and long-term advantages of regular milk-recording have always been enjoyed by all the Kibbutz herds, while many family farms of the Moshav type discovered only in later years the economy of knowing every single cow's production.


Comparison of selected brood cows to population average (1935).
CowsAve. annual yieldAve. daily yield
no. Milk, kg Fat, kg Fat % Milk , kg Fat, gr
All milk-recorded cows
Selected brood cows
Highest yielding herd (Ginegar)
1424
  327
   64
3916
4790
4485
 145
 175
 177
3.70
3.65
3.95
  13.3
  16.3
  15.2
  492
  595
  600

In 1984, ICBA erected the Central Laboratory for MiIk-recording, fitted with the most advanced testing equipment. The overall computerization of milk-recording and testing yields a continuous stream of pertinent data, readily available for Herdbook work, in general, and for the perfecting of breeding plans and progeny tests, in particular.


The Central Laboratory for Milk-recording is capable of testing for fat, protein, lactose and somatic cell count the monthly milk samples from all cows in the national herd. In fact, there is a constant growth in the number of dairy farmers participating in the milk-recording scheme and Israel-Holstein Herdbook. Due to its high standard of performance, ICBA's Central Laboratory serves also as a referential laboratory, according to which similar equipment located in commercial dairy plants is being checked and recalibrate, whenever necessary. Periodical "ring-tests" involving all major dairies have become the accepted rule.

Milk Recording in Israel

Herds

Average annual yield,Kg/cow (R.H.A)

Year Family
herds
Moshav
*villages
Kibbutz
herds
Total of
herds
Cows
no.
Milk Protein Fat F+ P
1934    1   11   12  1,029  3,690 136
1939    1   30   31  2,878  3,847 137
1944  11   58   69  5,303 4,227 150
1949  13  75   88 8,733 4,044 142
1954   18 180 198 14,337 4,197 149
1959   22 159 181 16,917  5,437 186
1964   14 188 202 24,013  5,694 186
1969   27 185 212 34,132  6,271 204
1974   30 184 214 47,161  6,833 220
1979   26 186 212 61,947  7,855 256
1984   19 186 205 66,000  8,734 287
1988   178   33 195 373 73,132  9,061 275 281 556
1989   284  50 195 479 72,645  9,092 273 288 561
1990   320  60 195 515 75,040  9,227 275 287 562
1995   643 119 206 849 95,038 10,086 302 315 617
1996   680 121 215 894 93,103 10,198 303 324 627
1997   738 126 217 954 93,948 10,447 317 341 658
1998   766 131 215 981 97,803 10,487 324 344 668
1999   708 125 208 916 98,485 10,469 321 341 662
2000   697 130 212 909 97,661 10,715 326 351 677
2001   716 125 210 926 104,660 10,585 327 356 683
2002   661 122 203 864 103,801 10,462 326 356 682
2003    81,602 10,945 3.09 3/49
*Moshav = Cooperative of small holders with family-owned herds, inclusive of ag. schools.

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