The Breeding Programme
For more than 65 years Rattlerow has meticulously followed a policy of extensive testing and selection using high health stock combined with strict genetic management procedures to ensure rapid generation turnover. This strategy has helped to maintain Rattlerow’s position as an industry leading genetics company.
Rattlerow’s Genetic program follows a holistic approach to deliver value throughout the supply chain. Rattlerow’s breeding goals include traits that improve efficiency throughout all stages in the supply chain from production to processing and final product quality. Being farmers ourselves we understand the factors that really make a difference to producers such as prolific, EASY2MANAGE animals, reliable rebreeding and lean & efficient growth. Our consistent selection and conformation scoring approach delivers uniformity which helps to drive processing efficiency. Regular eating quality and final product testing ensures that Rattlerow derived progeny provide an outstanding end user experience.
Performance data from Nucleus, GGP and GP animals across the globe is analysed on a weekly basis to produce genetic indices of all animals within Rattlerow’s breeding program allowing nucleus technicians to select animals with the greatest genetic potential into our breeding system.
Being a UK based breeding company, the relative weightings underpinning our breeding goals are based on UK production economics and take account of the indoor / outdoor split of UK production systems. Our unique genetic program incorporates purebred outdoor production data and economics into our breeding program. Data from our commercial production business feeds into our genetic program providing real-time feedback into our breeding programme.
DELIVERING CONTINUOUS GAINS
Rattlerow’s genetic program has successful delivered genetic gain to our customers over multiple decades. The consistency and focus of our program has been the key to our success.
Rattlerow employs BLUP (Best Linear Unbiased Prediction) selection across all its GGP populations for selection of GGPs, GPs, and commercial sire line animals within the breeding programme. BLUP selection provides the means to estimate the breeding value of an animal by removing all non-genetic influences affecting the performance of the animal for the trait being analysed e.g. time of year a sow is bred, the herd in which the sow is bred, and the parity of the sow.
All animals entering into Rattlerow’s breeding program undergo further phenotypic selection, considering confirmation, type and other physical attributes. Selection consistency is regularly cross checked across all of Rattlerow’s Nucleus and GP production systems.
Rattlerow employs BLUP (Best Linear Unbiased Prediction) selection across all its GGP populations for selection of GGPs, GPs, and commercial sire animals within the breeding programme. BLUP selection provides the means to estimate the breeding value of an animal by removing all non-genetic influences affecting the performance of the animal for the trait being analysed e.g. time of year a sow is bred, the herd in which the sow is bred, and the parity of the sow. This is what is meant by an unbiased prediction. It provides the best estimate of the breeding value as it is the most accurate predictor.
The BLUP system defines the performance as the pigs’ deviation from the mean of the contemporary group in which it is being measured and combines the performance of the individual pig with that of its relatives using the pedigree information to link the data. The relatives need not have been measured in the same environment as the individual which means data from multiple farms both at GGP level and GP level can be combined to increase accuracy within the Rattlerow BLUP system.
The BLUP system is proven to produce the fastest genetic gains and improvement in performance on farm.
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