French visit offers insight into latest technology and new options for delivery

The invitation to explore the latest innovations in AI and visit one of Europe’s newest boar studs proved a valuable fact finding mission for Rattlerow’s AI and Genetic production manager Ian Gillies, and stud manager Alan Moore.

Fact finding in France (l-r) Alan Moore - Thorney and Long Meadow Stud Manager, Laurent Huet - IMV Manufacturing Director, Ian Gillies - Rattlerow Farms AI and Genetic Production, Mickael Barre - IMV Sales Director.

Fact finding in France (l-r) Alan Moore – Thorney and Long Meadow Stud Manager, Laurent Huet – IMV Manufacturing Director, Ian Gillies – Rattlerow Farms AI and Genetic Production, Mickael Barre – IMV Sales Director.

Both of them recently visited AI specialist company IMV Technologies to tour its extensive manufacturing facilities at La Aigle in France. They were also treated to a day at Cobiporc’s newly commissioned multi-million stud near Janze, which has been kitted out by IMV.

Cobiporc, an AI co-operative based in Brittany, has 1,800 customers and holds about 60% of the total AI market in the west of France, and about 40% nationally. The new stud houses 300 boars and is capable of producing 530,000 doses annually.

“We wanted to see what products and procedures Cobiporc were using at its new stud across their semen collection, processing and packaging systems, and to learn more about developments that are on the horizon. IMV has a close association with our own AI business and we noted some interesting ideas and equipment being used in France, that Rattlerow is keen to explore and might integrate into its business,” said Ian Gillies.

“… we noted some interesting ideas and equipment being used in France, that Rattlerow is keen to explore…”

One innovative development is a new concept in AI catheter, which Ian says Rattlerow will trial on a number of its herds. If results are favourable, it will be offered to customers as part of the AI service.

“We already use a number of IMV’s porcine technologies and products – some of which are exclusive in the UK to Rattlerow. We have an excellent working relationship with the company, which we are proud of, and both our business and our customers businesses do benefit from it,” said Ian.

Superior standards

Although some IMV equipment and services might appear more expensive than alternatives that are currently available on the market, the product quality of its equipment is superior. The technical support service is also outstanding and Ian says the consistency, security and quality assurance provided by the company is valuable, which also ‘adds value’ to Rattlerow’s AI business.

Alan Moore, stud manager at Rattlerow’s Thorney and Long Meadow AI centres, agrees.

“These are factors that are important within our own nucleus and genetics business and also for our customers. From collection to packaging and delivery, quality is a priority because it impacts on overall performance and efficiency of the whole AI process from collection to insemination,” he added.

Alan was impressed with IMV’s manufacturing complex and was fascinated by the sheer diversity of its business. The considerable on-going investment into research and technical development is clearly evident throughout its many production processes, with an overriding ethos of dedication, precision and quality control.

“From collection to packaging and delivery, quality is a priority because it impacts on overall performance and efficiency of the whole AI process from collection to insemination.”

“The attention to detail is phenomenal at every level, which is matched by a clear objective to improve the efficiency and performance of artificial insemination processes where ever it is used. This is a rapidly evolving organisation, and as a customer with a significant and growing interest in delivering quality genetics via AI, that instils great confidence,” he added.

IMV Group is a world-renowned specialist in reproductive biotechnologies and artificial insemination. Its business interests cover many species – including the human reproductive sector – and it has a gold standard reputation for its science-led innovation and extensive range of high quality products. Many of the IMV AI technologies used in the UK pig sector were first introduced by Rattlerow.