MAPPING THE MAZE’ Equips Ranchers with Marketing Options

Mapping the MAZE through genetics, feeding and marketing options was the focus of upper Great Plains beef cattle producers during a seminar held October 28 in Mandan, North Dakota. The event was sponsored by the American Simmental Association, the American Red Angus Association, the American Gelbvieh Association and their North Dakota affiliates.

In an unprecedented alliance, the executive officers of three national breed associations joined together to share their expertise to assist commercial ranchers in finding maximum value in their cattle. .The concept of International Genetic Solutions (IGS) was presented by Wade Shafer, ASA CEO. The responsibilities of breed associations in the success of cow-calf operations was outlined by Myron Edelman, AGA CEO. Identifying the value of feeder cattle and achieving increased profitability was the final topic presented Tom Brink, RAAA CEO.

Commercial and seedstock producers took advantage of the opportunity to ask questions during a panel discussion at the conclusion of the collaborative meeting.




Bruce Goden, PhD.       Watch it NOW

 This video captures a highlight of the IGS Cattlemen's Seminar at the 2016 BIF.  Dr. Bruce Golden of Theta Solutions, LLC discusses how the new BOLT system empowers commercial beef producers with the next generation of Genomically Enhanced Genetic Evaluation.

Bruce Golden, PhD., Theta Solutions


Great attendance



Panel of Experts



Why Collaborate . . . Why IGS?

“Alone we can do so little;
together we can do so much”
— Helen Keller

“In the long history of humankind
(and animal kind, too) those
who learned to collaborate
and improvise most effectively
have prevailed”
— Charles Darwin

We all can easily recognize that the preceding quotes speak volumes.  Nevertheless, in the breed association world, the level of collaboration has been somewhere between barely breathing and dead. That said, few if any commercial producers would disagree that our industry would be better served through increased levels of collaboration.  IGS is an outgrowth of listening to the commercial industry!

The Advantages of IGS

Unrivaled Database — Fueled by data from 12 progressive breed associations across the United States and Canada that combine for over 16 million total animal records with over 400,000 new animals added annually. Not only is the IGS database unmatched in size, but it’s also unsurpassed in quality as the vast majority of new records are derived from IGS partners who implement whole herd reporting.  Proven Genetic Evaluation System —Based on three decades of continually improving the genetic evaluation system to accurately account for heterosis and breed differences, the EPD calculation system employed by IGS is the nation’s most respected genetic solution software.  Simplified Selection Tools —While the process of calculating EPDs on the world’s largest multi-breed database is complex, the IGS partners have taken a revolutionary step by presenting the resulting EPDs on a common base; thus, allowing commercial producers to directly compare the genetic merit of animals regardless of breed composition.  Regardless if your breeding objective is to develop the next generation of purebred seedstock, or reaping the proven benefits of structured crossbreeding, IGS provides the industry’s most-reliable genetic solution tools to assist in achieving producers’ goals.

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The IGS Revolution

To maintain its leadership position, IGS is currently collaborating with world-renown geneticists from Theta Solutions LLC, in the development of what is soon to be the world’s most advanced genetic evaluation system.  Dubbed BOLT (Biometric Open Language Tools), this system will greatly enhance the beef industry’s ability to leverage genomic information, thereby accelerating genetic improvement at rates beyond currently possible.

The first IGS evaluation produced by BOLT is scheduled for 2016.  Watch for it!

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