We are pleased to launch the ICBF genomics service for additional Dairy breeds. There are now 16 dairy breeds eligible for a genomic evaluation. The 9 additional dairy breeds are BS, SI, MY, SR, KE, NO, RB, RD and MS. The cost to genotype dairy females as part of a group or individually is €22. Herds participating in the Dairy Gene Ireland breeding programme can avail of the discounted price of €18 for their 2021 & 2022 born females.

Updated Genomic Training population

To generate genomic evaluations, a training population needs to be established and continually updated.  The training population is a large population of genotyped animals with accurate performance information such as milk yield or fertility. The links between the DNA and performance measures are then developed from this population. When an animal is genotyped, the DNA profile is analysed and is compared to the DNA profiles of proven animals in the training population and looks for similarities. The genomic data is combined with performance data and ancestry data which will increase the EBI accuracy of an animal.

In the November evaluation run, additional dairy breeds have been added to the Irish training population for the first time.  The inclusion of extra dairy breeds now means that genomic evaluations can now be published for them. Previously, genomic evaluations were limited to only 7 dairy breeds (HO, FR, RW, JE, MO, NR, AY). An additional 1,500 animals have been added to the training population and a further 5,000 animals have now received genomic evaluations.

Updating the size and criteria of animals included in the training population is essential to increase the accuracy of genomic predictions and to generate greater genetic gain in the future.

What dairy breeds can now get a genomic evaluation?

List of Eligible dairy breeds
Breed Code Breeds
HO/FR Holstein/Friesian
RW Red & White
JE Jersey
MO Montbeliarde
NR Norwegian Red
AY Ayrshire
BS Brown Swiss
SI Simmental (Fleckveih)
MY Mry
SH Shorthorn
SR Swedish Red
NO Normande
RB Rotbunte
RD Red Danish
MS Milking Shorthorn


What are the new eligibility rules for dairy animals to get a genomic evaluation?

If the sum of all known breed percentages (HO, FR, RW, JE, MO, NR, AY, BS, SI, MY, SH, SR, KE, NO, RB, RD, MS) is greater or equal to 28 parts (87.5%) then the animal will be eligible for a genomic evaluation.

What traits will get genomic evaluations published in the EBI for dairy minor breeds?

There will be a genomic evaluation published for all traits in the EBI for the dairy minor breeds.

Why genotype your dairy females?

This genomic Information can be used to make better management decisions such as, mating optimisation, verification of pedigree and increase the EBI reliability figure. Click Here for more information on the benefits of genotyping your dairy females.

How to Order a Genotype?

Herd-owners can order DNA kits through our self-selection screen by logging into your ICBF Account and selecting ‘Services’ – ‘Genomic Services’ – ‘Place Order’– ‘Genotype Female Groups’. All the different stages of the order can be tracked using the Genotype tracking screen. Payment can be made using a credit or debit card.  Alternatively, you can call the HerdPlus Team on 023 8820452 or email [email protected]. 

Genomic Evaluation Results

The genomic results will be incorporated into the animal’s genetic evaluation and can be viewed quickly and easily on the dairy genomic results evaluation profile.

The profile displays an animal’s current official genomic proof and the difference from non-genomic proof. The difference from non-genomic proof calculates the difference between the genomic EBI and the non-genomic proof. This is done across all the traits from the EBI. A detailed genomic evaluation report will also be available to view on the reports section of the website.