Technology Lag: We Don't Have Time

From Shauna Hermel's Twitter feed, I came across this article about David Buchanan's talk at the 2013 BIF Research Symposium and Convention. Buchanan said,
There is a sizable investment being made in agricultural research, which should result in new technologies, but it takes time for development and adoption, and then for the benefits to be realized. Historically, it takes about 30 years. We don’t have 30 years.
I also see technology adoption as a major shortcoming of the beef industry. This will be a continued theme of this blog and my extension program.

But, in this post I want to discuss the unresolved concern raised in Troy Smith's article. He quotes Buchanan as saying, "“We’ve done pretty well, but we could do better. But better selection tools just get us into trouble faster if we aren’t selecting for the right things.”

Yet, the article does not suggest what are the "right things". In your experience and based on scientific information, what are the right things?

Please leave your thoughts in the comment section below.
(I have turned off word verification, so it should be easier to comment on the blog. If spam gets out of control, I'll have to turn word verification back on.)

After you have left a comment, click on the button below to see my thoughts.


Anonymous said…
respiratory disease resistance
disease resistance in general
across breed causality
Don Nicol said…
I attended the farewell dinner for a retiring extension adviser here in Queensland a few years ago. When asked if the rate of adoption had improved over his career, he replied "Well yes, what used to take 20 years now only takes 19 years…."
In many ways the coming of genomics in beef has just made the genetic messages more complex and has added new jargon & new dimensions to the "black box". Genetic improvement as a permanent, sustainable means of herd improvement and supply chain improvement needs continuous education and simple profit messages but how to ramp up adoption is still a challenge
Graybull said…
"It is dishonest to suggest, or imply, that BLUP (EPD) analysis will allow accurate genetic comparisons of all economically important traits across all environments. A trait such as fertility is determined by hormonal balance (largely unaffected by environment) and body condition (largely a reflection of environmental adaptation). It is therefore subjected to genotype X environment interaction. Animals performing well in one environment may perform poorly in a different environment. This is reflected in fertility. No mathematical model can correct for this in order to allow animals be compared across environments with regard to traits that are subjected to genotype X environment interaction."

Johann Zietsman

From: Man - Cattle - Veld, A Ranching Revolution: To be published later this year.

Potentially more accurate selection (Genomics) for the wrong things will NOT improve genetics and/or profitability. For the RIGHT things…….

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