Island Holstein breeders receive special designation
Two Holstein breeders in Prince Edward Island have received the highest distinction the breed organization confers. Lexis Holsteins, formerly of Freetown, and Winterbay Holsteins of Bedford have been designated as master breeders by Holstein Canada.
“The Island’s dairy industry takes great pride in its breeding practices and its focus on dairy genetics is known across the nation for its high quality,” says Alan McIsaac, minister of agriculture and fisheries.
“This recognition for two hardworking Island farm families is a testament to the Island’s continued agriculture success.”
Gene and Cheryl Smallman and their son Jody operated Lexis Holsteins in Freetown until their herd was dispersed in August 2013.
The Smallmans now reside in Kensington. The Lexis herd was established around very strong cow families with solid production and conformation. One of the best animals bred at Lexis was Lexis Goldwyn Lulu EX 94. She was nominated three times for All Canadian and was twice named Honorable Mention All Canadian.
John and Janet Bysterveldt, along with their son Jeffrey and his wife Amy, operate Winterbay Holsteins in Bedford. The Bysterveldts milk 80 cows in a modern tie stall barn.
Their very successful breeding program has produced some great cows including the 2010 Royal Winter Fair Grand Champion Winterbay Goldwyn Lotto.
Good management and an active embryo transfer program have helped the Bysterveldt family to achieve the honor of being named master breeders.
The Holstein Association of Canada began in 1884 and was incorporated nationally in 1901. It remains the only organization authorized to register Holstein cattle in Canada.
The master breeder award is the highest honour an individual Holstein breeder can achieve. These master breeders are recognized for having the best ratio for breeding cows that possess the complete package — high production and outstanding conformation, with high proficiency in reproduction, health and longevity.
Prince Edward Island Holstein breeders have achieved regional, national and international recognition. Holstein cattle have come away with top honours at the Royal Winter Fair and a number of international competitions. The genetic quality of Holstein cattle bred in this province is widely recognized, and breeders have been highly successful in the sale of embryos to markets around the world.
Lexis Holsteins and Winterbay Holsteins will receive their master breeders shield at the National Holstein Convention in April, joining with other breeders from Prince Edward Island who have been previously recognized.
For more information on Prince Edward Island Holsteins, go to holsteinpei.com/en/