FrieslandCampina WAMCO, a leading dairy company, proudly announces a significant milestone in the Nigerian dairy sector with the successful crossbreeding and birth of 25 Crossbreed Girolando calves.
This achievement was accomplished locally across various farms in Oyo, Ogun, and Kwara states, signifying a momentous step forward in the country’s dairy production.
The Girolando breed, a composite of Milking Gir from Brazil and Holstein Friesian from the Netherlands, has a proven track record of exceptional performance in dairy production. Originating in Brazil, the breed’s combination has propelled the country to become a global powerhouse in dairy farming. With a reputation for high milk yield, heat tolerance, resistance to tick-borne diseases, and other advantageous characteristics for tropical climates like Nigeria, the Girolando breed holds great promise for the local dairy industry.
In 2022, FrieslandCampina WAMCO, in collaboration with partners of the Value4Dairy Consortium, produced 1400 Girolando semen straws and achieved 610 successful artificial inseminations. As a result, 25 healthy Crossbreed Girolando calves have been born to date, representing the first generation of a new high milk-producing breed in Nigeria.
The introduction of the Crossbreed Girolando calves marks a significant advancement for the Nigerian dairy sector, as it paves the way for increased milk production and improved productivity. FrieslandCampina WAMCO, alongside its partners in the Value4Dairy Consortium, remains dedicated to providing scalable solutions to address agricultural challenges in the Nigerian dairy industry.
Through this successful crossbreeding initiative, FrieslandCampina WAMCO aims to enhance the genetic potential of local dairy herds, enabling farmers to attain higher milk yields and bolstering the overall sustainability of the sector. By leveraging the genetic advantages of the Girolando breed, dairy farmers in Nigeria can overcome challenges related to heat stress and tick-borne diseases, ultimately increasing their profitability and contributing to the growth of the dairy industry.
The Girolando calves are the first generation of a new high milk-producing breed in Nigeria, according to a statement made by the company’s Executive Director, Corporate Affairs, Ore Famurewa. Famurewa explained that the Girolando breed is a composite of ‘Milking Gir’ from Brazil and Holstein Friesian from the Netherlands and has produced tremendous results for many decades in Brazil, leading to its transformation into a world power in dairy production.
“In addition to having a high milk yield, the Girolando breed is heat-tolerant, tick-borne disease resistant and possesses other characteristics ideal for production in tropical countries like Nigeria,” Famurewa said.
The Girolando breed was selected for introduction to Nigeria by FrieslandCampina WAMCO and URUS Group LP (the largest cow genetics company in the world), one of its strategic partners of the Value4Dairy Consortium, an initiative launched in 2021 as part of its dairy development activities. The other partners are Barenbrug (a leading grass seed company) and Agrifirm (a leading feed and supplement company in the Netherlands).