The Commercial Beef Value (CBV) is to go live on mart boards in 1st March 2023. Approx. 80% of Irish marts currently display Euro-Star data on their boards. The CBV will be a new addition and will be an important tool for drystock (non-breeding beef) herds purchasing animals in the future.

What is the CBV?

The CBV is a € value on an animal’s overall genetic merit for the traits of importance to a drystock enterprise. These are:

  • Carcass weight
  • Conformation
  • Fat
  • Feed intake
  • Docility

In the Jan 2023 evaluation, a number of new traits have been added such as ‘age at slaughter’ and ‘% in spec’ for the three carcass traits – weight, conformation and fat. A carbon sub-index has also been included to account for the carbon cost of producing these animals. The carbon sub-index makes up 10% of the average animal’s CBV.

Like the Replacement and Terminal Indexes, the CBV is expressed as a € value with a star rating. There are both ‘across breed’ and ‘within breed type’ star ratings. There are three ‘within breed type’ categories:

  • Suckler (beef sire and beef dam)
  • Dairy x Beef (one dairy parent and one beef parent)
  • Dairy x Dairy (dairy sire and dairy dam)

Farmers often have a set enterprise in terms of the type of animal they buy e.g. continental suckler weanlings, dairy x beef store heifers, Friesian bull calves, etc. The ‘within breed type’ star rating will help farmers to identify the highest genetic merit animals within the breed type of interest to them.

What are the star rating cut-offs for each breed type?

The star rating percentiles (cut-offs) will be very different across the three breed types. As you would expect, the average value for suckler animals is the highest, with dairy x beef next, with dairy x dairy being the lowest. Table 1 details the percentiles across breed, but also within the three breed types.

Table 1. The star rating percentile (cut-off) values for the CBV (Jan 2023).

What animals will it be displayed for?

The CBV will be displayed on mart boards for genotyped:

  • Commercial suckler males and uncalved females
  • Dairy x beef males and uncalved females
  • Dairy x dairy males

Animals must also be in a herd subscribed to the ICBF HerdPlus service. The CBV will not be displayed on mart boards for ungenotyped animals. Pedigree beef animals, dairy females and calved females will not have a CBV.

How can I access the CBV details on my animals?

Herds signed up to the ICBF HerdPlus service can access the CBV information on their animals online. There is a CBV profile in the ‘View Profiles’ section of their HerdPlus account. The CBV is displayed on the online profile for both genotyped and ungenotyped animals.

How will it appear on the mart board?

The CBV will appear in the same format as the Replacement index which is currently being displayed on mart boards. Figure 1 shows a mart board with the CBV information displayed at the bottom.

Figure 1. A mart board with the CBV information displayed in the ICBF section at the bottom.

For more information on the CBV, please contact ICBF on 023-8820452 or email [email protected]. You can also listen to the podcast below which gives some more detail on the CBV.