FrieslandCampina WAMCO has disclosed the successful crossbreeding and birth of 25 crossbreed Girolando calves achieved locally across various farms in Oyo, Ogun, and Kwara states, a feat it described as “a production revolution and transformation of Nigeria’s dairy sector”.
In 2022, 1,400 Girolando semen straws were produced and 610 artificial inseminations were achieved, and 25 crossbreed Girolando calves have been birthed to date, the dairy organisation disclosed in a statement made available to BusinessDay.
FrieslandCampina WAMCO sees this milestone achievement as an important step to give smallholder farmers access to affordable good-yield dairy cows in Nigeria.
“In addition to having a high milk yield, the Girolando breed is heat-tolerant, tick-borne disease resistant and possesses other characteristics ideal for production in tropical countries like Nigeria,” Ore Famurewa, the dairy company’s executive director, said.
“The Girolando calves are the first generation of a new high milk-producing breed in Nigeria,” Famurewa added.
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He explained that the Girolando breed is a composite of ‘Milking Gir’ from Brazil and Holstein Friesian from the Netherlands and has produced tremendous results for many decades in Brazil, leading to its transformation into a world power in dairy production.
FrieslandCampina WAMCO continues to contribute to the development of the dairy sector and national food security through its Dairy Development activities and partnerships such as the Value4Dairy Consortium.
Launched in April 2021, the Value4Dairy Consortium is made up of four strategic partners namely FrieslandCampina WAMCO (Nigeria’s foremost dairy Company), URUS (the largest cow genetics company in the world), Barenbrug (a leading grass seed company) and Agrifirm (a leading feed and supplement company in the Netherlands).
The consortium is making progress in implementing sustainable strategies to fast-track growth and development of the Nigerian dairy sector, with proven track records in various agri-related value chains.
Two partners of the Consortium, FrieslandCampina WAMCO and URUS Group LP, the global leader in cattle breeding and dairy herd management programs, selected the Girolando breed for introduction to Nigeria and subsequently signed an agreement with a local breeding farm-SMAP Farms Limited.
The strategic partnership will maximize success in crossbreeding and increase milk yields on local farms in a sustainable way.