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dc.contributor.authorFarrell, L.
dc.contributor.authorHerron, J.
dc.contributor.authorPabiou, T.
dc.contributor.authorMcHugh, Noirin
dc.contributor.authorMcDermott, K.
dc.contributor.authorShalloo, Laurence
dc.contributor.authorO'Brien, D.
dc.contributor.authorBohan, A.
dc.date.accessioned2022-09-22T13:49:13Z
dc.date.available2022-09-22T13:49:13Z
dc.date.issued2022-08-31
dc.identifier.citationL. Farrell, J. Herron, T. Pabiou, N. McHugh, K. McDermott, L. Shalloo, D. O'Brien, A. Bohan, Modelling the production, profit, and greenhouse gas emissions of Irish sheep flocks divergent in genetic merit, Agricultural Systems, Volume 201, 2022, 103467, ISSN 0308-521X, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.agsy.2022.103467.en_US
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/11019/2846
dc.descriptionpeer-revieweden_US
dc.description.abstractCONTEXTSheep production industries face the challenge of increasing farm production and profit while reducing environmental impacts. OBJECTIVESGenetic selection using multi-trait breeding indices can be used to improve flock productivity, profitability, and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions intensities (kg CO2-eq /kg of product), however validation of the improved performance of animals ranked higher on breeding indices at a flock level is required. METHODSPhenotypic data from 387,580 production records of animals born between 2018 and 2020 of known genetic merit in commercial flocks were inputted to an established bio-economic model. Two contrasting flocks were compared, a flock of ewes ranked High (top 20%) on the Irish replacement Index bred with rams ranked High on the replacement and terminal indices, and a flock of ewes ranked Low (bottom 20%) on the Irish replacement Index bred with rams ranked Low on the replacement and terminal indices. The two flocks were then simulated using life cycle assessment to estimate the GHG emissions profile for both systems. RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONFlock weaning rates were 1.70 and 1.53 lambs weaned per ewe presented for breeding for the High and Low genetic merit flocks, respectively. The flock of High genetic merit ewes sold 0.17 more lambs per ewe, equating to 3.29 kg more lamb carcass per ewe, than the flock of Low genetic merit ewes; lambs from the High genetic merit flock were also sold at an earlier age. The greater production of the High genetic merit flocks resulted in an additional €18/ewe net profit than the Low genetic merit flock. Although total flock GHG emissions were higher for the High genetic merit flock, GHG emissions intensities were lower at 21.7 and 23.3 kg CO2-eq /kg lamb carcass sold for the High and Low genetic merit flocks, respectively. The lower emissions intensity of the High genetic merit flock was due to the dilution effect of higher lamb production and lambs being drafted for slaughter ealier. SIGNIFICANCEThe results suggest Irish sheep producers can make substantial profit gains through selection according to the national breeding indices while also reducing their environmental impact, and farmers should consider genetic merit when purchasing their rams, particularly sires of replacement ewe lambs.en_US
dc.language.isoenen_US
dc.publisherElsevieren_US
dc.relation.ispartofseriesAgricultural Systems;Vol 201
dc.rights© 2022 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
dc.rightsCC BY-NC-SA 4.0*
dc.rights.urihttps://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/*
dc.subjectLife cycle assessmenten_US
dc.subjectBio-economicen_US
dc.subjectTerminalen_US
dc.subjectReplacementen_US
dc.subjectBreedingen_US
dc.subjectValidationen_US
dc.titleModelling the production, profit, and greenhouse gas emissions of Irish sheep flocks divergent in genetic meriten_US
dc.typeArticleen_US
dc.identifier.doihttps://doi.org/10.1016/j.agsy.2022.103467
dc.contributor.sponsorDepartment of Agriculture, Food and the Marineen_US
dc.contributor.sponsorGrantNumber17/S/235en_US
dc.contributor.sponsorGrantNumber2019/EN/202en_US
dc.source.volume201
dc.source.beginpage103467
refterms.dateFOA2022-09-22T13:49:15Z
dc.source.journaltitleAgricultural Systems


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  • Livestock Systems [261]
    Teagasc LIvestock Systems Department includes Dairy, Cattle and Sheep research.

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© 2022 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as © 2022 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.