Crossbreeding with Holstein 

The Holstein breed’s ability to produce large volumes of milk has made it a favorite for dairy producers around the world. However, while the Holsteins excel in milk production, it is key to protect them in traits such as fertility, health, and stature when you compare them to other breeds.  

The Positives of the Holstein Breed 

  • Most popular in the world 
  • Ability to produce large volumes of milk 

Holsteins and Norwegian Red 

Holstein’s ability to grow revenue through increased milk production makes its use extremely popular in crossbred programs as this strength improves the weakness of many other breeds that offer benefits in fertility and health, such as Norwegian Red. Similarly, the Norwegian Red helps correct the weaknesses in health and fertility that come with the Holstein breed. This synergistic relationship is known as breed complementarity.  

Crossbreeding with Holstein and Jersey 

HoJos are currently being milked by many large, profit-driven dairy producers, who are benefiting from the higher profitability these small, efficient cows provide. 

Producers frequently alternate between Jersey and Holstein in a two-way cross. Although this is a straightforward procedure, many producers make the mistake of breeding a Holstein to a Jersey if the animal looks like a Holstein, and vice versa. By using this strategy, heterosis is decreased and herd variation is increased. 

To learn more about crossbreeding with Holsteins, contact your ABS Genetics Advisor or complete the form below.