I’m told Teagasc Moorepark has got into bed with a meat factory. My caller alleges that the factory is funding a new laboratory for Teagasc to the tune of €1m for IVF (in-vitro fertilisation) in cows, so they can use better beef genetics.

Obviously, my contact is not a friend of Moorepark, dairy farmers nor indeed meat factories. Anyway, no smoke without fire, so I went digging.

I was told senior researchers in Moorepark are having discussions with Vytelle about some proof of concept studies for genetic gain for both dairy and beef, but that it is “early days” in the discussions. They didn’t categorically deny any factory funding.

While I’m on the subject, I enquired about developments on setting up an Irish sexed semen laboratory and I was told “no developments”.

So, it looks like, from the outside, a shiny IVF toy for Christmas has overtaken the sexed semen laboratory and dairy farmers won’t have Irish-produced sexed semen next year either. Bah humbug.

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