A look behind the scenes at the CRV test farms

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The ten CRV test farms in the Netherlands and Flanders have a vital role to play in the breeding programme. Due to the corona restrictions, visiting the farms is still not possible. But a film can also take you behind the scenes.

The heart of CRV’s Holstein breeding programme is in Wirdum in Friesland. CRV’s Dairy Breeding Center is home to some 400 young female animals with the highest genetic predisposition for health and efficiency. They have been chosen from among very best animals in the European Holstein population and are used as donors for the breeding programme. The next generation of bulls and bull dams will be selected from the calves produced by their embryos.


Testing in practice

When they are pregnant, the donors are transferred from the DBC to one of the ten test farms in the Netherlands and Flanders. Here, they give birth to their first calves and have the opportunity to prove their genetic potential. The CRV test farms are commercial dairy farms which, in addition to their own animals, take in 15 heifers from the breeding programme each year. In this way the dams and grand dams of the bulls in CRV’s portfolio are extensively trialled in practical conditions.


100,000 kg milk from breeding programme

The farmers who test these heifers for CRV like to show them to visitors. They are extremely satisfied with the health and efficiency of the animals that prove their ability to achieve high lifetime production effortlessly.  There are numerous cows that originate from the CRV breeding programme on these test farms that have produced 100,000 kg of milk.


Film instead of a visit

Because the corona restrictions prevent visits to the actual farms, CRV has produced a film that takes you behind the scenes.