In recent months Hermitage Genetics have commenced working with Max Rothschild, a well know swine geneticist from Iowa State University and former US Swine Genome Coordinator, to help further advance their genetics program by employing genomics in two new ways to further increase the rate of genetic progress. Hermitage Genetics have expanded their testing programme using a number of well-established genetic markers to help select pigs for improved growth rate, better feed efficiency and better pork quality. These markers, combined with BLUP technology to evaluate animals based on their records and those of their relatives, helps to ensure that genetic improvement will be maximized in the different product lines. Secondly, as part of an international research project, genomic evaluation and selection has begun using over 50,000 genotypes per animal to examine individual gene effects on many important production traits. This effort is among one the first by genetic suppliers to explore the use of genomic selection techniques to augment standard methods to estimate breeding values with genomic information. As these advances continue to evolve and become incorporated in their breeding stock, Hermitage Genetics will continue to employ cutting edge techniques for improved genetics. The use of genomic technologies confirms Hermitage Genetics commitment to producing the best breeding stock for their customers worldwide.
Pictured: Professor Max Rothschild