Project properties

Title Evaluating the results of five years organic dairy cattle breeding (Bio-KI)
Group Farming Systems Ecology
Project type thesis
Credits 24-39
Supervisor(s) Egbert Lantinga
Wytze Nauta
Examiner(s) Pablo Tittonell
Contact info
Begin date 2014/11/01
End date 2019/01/01
Description Organic dairy farming is lacking organic breeding principles. In 2009 we started selecting breeding bulls on organic farms for artificial insemination (AI). Organic AI is unique in the world since this approach has never been done before. We also follow a new kind of breeding system, the so called Young Bull breeding system, which means that a number of young bulls is selected each year and semen is sold/used evenly spread over the population and herds (Bichard, 2002). This system has been chosen because a testing system would be too expensive for the relatively small organic sector and would result in inbreeding problems (Nauta, 2009). The whole process of selection, raising the bulls and semen collection is performed within an organic environment. Hereafter. the bulls are sold for natural breeding. Since 2009 eight bulls have been selected and up to 5000 doses of semen have been sold.

To analyse the results of Bio-KI and study the opportunities/strategies of Bio-KI for the future with a focus on farmers experience with and opinions about Bio-KI and organic breeding in general.

• Develop a research strategy including questionnaires and interviews
• Gather information and evaluate
• Process data into SPSS for statistical analysis
• Report the results in a report and/or a publication
Used skills • Preparation of a detailed proposal
• Conducting research including data collection
• Learning how to work with SPSS
• Interpretation of findings
• Writing an MSc thesis (and preferably a manuscript for a journal) in English