Company News

Thank You Dr Chesnais!

Dr Jacques Chesnais' last day at Semex will be Monday, July 31. Dr Chesnais, Semex Senior Geneticist, first joined Semex in 2003 and has led our genetics team on many fronts. Most importantly, he pioneered genomic studies with industry partners and supported the research behind many key Semex tools and programs. Semex thanks Dr Chesnais for his steadfast dedication and the entire Semex Family wishes him all the best in this next chapter of his life.     When asked about changes he has seen since 2003 he comments, "Without question it has been the introduction of genomic selection. One of the main reasons I joined Semex in 2003 was that I believed, based on the science available at the time, that genomic selection would revolutionize selection in dairy cattle."   "Semex was willing to let me start a research program to investigate this idea, even if at the time few people in the industry thought that genomics could have a large impact on dairy cattle breeding. The next year, in 2004, we started what was the first AI-driven research project in genomic selection in North America, in cooperation with the University of Guelph and Pyxis Genomics, based on 4,500 markers. By 2006, following the sequencing of the bovine genome, we were using 10,000 markers. Soon after, we realized we needed more markers and more bulls and became part of the USDA genomics project led by Curt Van Tassell, which used DNA from the Collaborative Dairy DNA repository (CDDR)."   "This led to North American genomic evaluations in 2008 on a research basis, and in 2009 on an official basis and the rest is now history."    Thank you Dr Chesnais and best wishes! 
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Semex is pleased to announce that famous dairy cattle photographer Patty Jones will be inducted into the Canadian Agricultural Hall of Fame.   The inductee notice reads, “Patty Jones has built a world-renowned business with a seasoned skill for photographing dairy animals that has changed the way they are marketed in Canada and around the world. For more than 44 years, Patty has been expertly capturing a visual history for Canadian dairy breed improvement as one of the most respected and well-known livestock photographers in the world. Her library contains more than 70,000 animals from all breeds, and she’s trained many aspiring livestock photographers to carry on the craft. Her official photographer status extends to major shows, including 4-H and the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair. Patty’s passion for the dairy industry includes her own Silvercap Holsteins farm where she buys, sells and breeds. Patty Jones lives in Puslinch, ON.”   Semex CEO Paul Larmer comments, “On behalf of Semex and our owning partners, it was our pleasure to nominate Patty Jones to the Canadian Agricultural Hall of Fame. When reflecting on Patty’s 44-year career, it was easy to garner strong support for her nomination, as her contribution to Canada’s dairy cattle industry is immeasurable. Her skill for photographing female and male dairy animals to perfection has changed the way animals are marketed in Canada and around the world.”   “Patty built a world-renowned dairy cattle photography business, and the benefactors are dairy cattle breeders and the Canadian and global dairy industries,” says Larmer. “Semex was honoured to nominate Patty Jones to the Canadian Agricultural Hall of Fame and we’re pleased the Selection Committee has recognized her for her extraordinary contribution to the dairy cattle industry, youth programs and Canadian agriculture.”   Patty will be formally inducted into the Hall of Fame at a ceremony on Thursday, November 30, 2017 in Calgary, Alberta.
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Semex is pleased to announce that Dr. Michael Lohuis has commenced the role of Vice President, Genetics R&D.

Reporting to Brad Sayles, Vice President, Product Development & Genetic Solutions, Dr. Lohuis will join the Product Development Team, leading Genetic and Genomics R&D.

“We’re extremely excited to have Dr. Lohuis join our team,” says Sayles. “His vast and diverse industry experience will certainly contribute to the further development and execution of our genetic strategies. And, in our rapidly changing global industry, he will be key in the on-going development of programs and solutions for our clients worldwide.”

Michael is no stranger to the genetics industry, as he obtained both his Ph.D. in Animal Breeding and B.Sc. in Animal Science from the University of Guelph, and started his career as a Sire Analyst with Eastern Breeders, Inc.

Most recently, Michael was Monsanto’s Director, Environmental Strategy for Agriculture for its Corporate Engagement Team. This team coordinates Monsanto’s strategy to address the challenges and opportunities associated with agriculture and the environment.

Dr. Lohuis began his Monsanto career in 1998 as Lead for their Animal Genomics & Breeding program and moved to the Global Plant Breeding Team in 2007. He has led teams of scientists in the fields of statistics, crop modeling, patent science, genomics and breeding.

Prior to joining Monsanto, he was an Assistant Professor (Breeding Strategies) in the Animal Science Department, University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada, and was Research Project Leader for the Canadian Association of Animal Breeders leading the use of multiple ovulation and embryo transfer (MOET) to accelerate genetic improvement in the Ayrshire and Holstein breeds.

Michael, his wife Carol and their daughter Julia reside in St. Louis, Missouri and will be relocating to Ontario in June.
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Semex is pleased to announce that Melissa Bowers has been named Manager, Jersey/Coloured Breeds & Embryo Client Services effective May 1, 2017.

Reporting to Brad Sayles, Vice President Product Development & Genetic Solutions, Melissa will join the Product Development Team while maintaining her role as Semex’s Embryo Client Services Manager.

Melissa has led Semex’s Embryo Sales Team since April 2013, and will continue to be responsible for this program’s sales development and service. Working with Canadian breeders to source embryos for resale, she is the liaison between Boviteq and Semex’s product development team and Semex’s network of OPU centres and clients utilizing Boviteq services.

Melissa joined Semex in May 2012 as a Sales & Product Specialist, working closely with the both the Embryo and Product Support Teams. Prior to that, Melissa worked for Semex's partner, Centre d'insémination artificielle du Québec (CIAQ) as an Agricultural Technician. Melissa also worked with Cargill Ltd and Agribrands Purina. Additionally, Melissa is fully bilingual in English and French, and hails from the accomplished Lencrest Jersey Farm in Coaticook, Quebec, Canada.

“Melissa’s experience at Semex and her real-world Jersey knowledge make her the ideal candidate to oversee our growing Jersey program,” says Brad Sayles. “During her tenure at Semex, Melissa has shown exceptional leadership and communication skills. We look forward to the growth and development of both programs under her guidance.”
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Semex Delivering Results

Semex continues to deliver results to our clients worldwide, year after year. The backbone of these results is our genetic development strategy. This focus continues to deliver results to all corners of the globe, and with each genetic evaluation we are more and more excited about the future of 200 code sires: December 2015 graduate, 0200HO02792 Sandy-Valley Saloon continues to top the GTPI list at #5 GTPI in April!  This globally popular A2A2 sire is now+2599 with +2335 PTAM, +169 CFP and the best PTAT in the top five GTPI at +2.85! Semex sires occupy 10 of the top 25 PTAT positions and are led by global superstar, Immunity+ and A2A2 sire 0200HO06480 Val-Bisson Doorman +3.59. Doorman is also Canada's #2 Conf Sire at +16 and is the #3 LPI Sire at +3224! Genomax™ sires are an undeniable force, with 12 of the top 100 GTPI sires calling 200HO home on the Official High Ranking Genomic Young Bull List. This includes the #1 GTPI sire at +2952, 0200HO10900 Progenesis Fabulous, who will be available in 2018. In Canada, Semex has four of the top five GLPI sires, including the #1 GLPI sire, Progenesis Midnight, also available in 2018. Genomax™ sires are also topping the North American type charts, with 0200HO10805 Scientific Drive and 0200HO10882 Walnutlawn Surge tying for the #1 Conformation position in Canada at +20. In the US, these sires tie for the #5 position at +4.06, confirming their ability to transmit elite type.  The new #1 LPI sire is the highly anticipated 0200HO3910 Comestar Lautrust, graduating at +3330 LPI and carrying the coveted Immunity+™ status as well as Calving Ease™, A2A2, high fertility Repromax™ and HealthSmart™. The new #1 Conformation proven sire in Canada is Semex’s 0200HO03913 Croteau Lesperron Unix, an Immunity+™, ShowTime™ and Calving Ease sire with +17 Conf and +2.93 PTAT. Beyond North America, 200HO sires continued to dominate UK listings: 0200HO10777 Westcoast ... Read More...


Semex’s Immunity+™ sired daughters have naturally higher colostrum quality. Both in scientific trials and commercial herds, they are shown to produce higher quality colostrum than herdmates. Only available through Semex, Immunity+ sires are quickly becoming the global dairyman’s choice in improving herd health. "Dairymen everywhere know that a healthy herd starts with healthy calves," says Paul Krueger, Semex Immunity+ Global Brand Manager. "High quality colostrum is key to ensuring healthy calves. And, the best start we can give the calves is with Immunity+… The world’s only option for higher quality colostrum with genetics." "Since December, our Immunity+ portfolio has only increased its quality, as the valuable Immunity+ brand is found laced throughout our proven and Genomax™ offering. Our Genomax Immunity+ lineup now has 19 sires over +2600 GTPI and 44 over +2500! They offer the best genetic package with Immunity+, making them extremely valuable to all dairymen worldwide.”  In its elite Genomax™ lineup, Semex now has: 84 Genomax Immunity+ bulls over +2400 GTPI 44 Genomax Immunity+ bulls over +2500 GTPI 19 Genomax Immunity+ bulls over +2600 GTPI 24 Genomax Jersey Immunity+ bulls 10 Genomax Ayrshire Immunity+ bulls Leading the Holstein group is 0200HO10693 Siemers Bloomfield (Delta x Numero Uno x Shottle), who is the #4 Delta available at +2752 GTPI with +7.7 PL, +3.7 DPR, 2.63 SCS, +105 PTAF with a +0.34% Fat and solid 2.37 PTAT and +2.33 UDC. Bloomfield is also a HealthSmart™ and RobotReady™ sire. His maternal line is popular worldwide, with his dam being a VG-85 Numero Uno from EX-94-2E 21* Gen-I-Beq Shottle Bombi back to Braedale Gypsy Grand herself.   For more information on Semex, Genetics for Life, Immunity+, Genomax sires or any of Semex’s brands visit: 
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Congratulations To Semex's Tom Kroetsch!

Tom Kroetsch has been at the helm of Semex’s production laboratories since transferring from EastGen in 2002 to be Semex’s Technical Specialist, working closely with our partner semen laboratories. Since then his work has spanned the globe and taken him to our subsidiary and production facilities worldwide, ensuring Semex’s Gold Standard™ is universal. Semex congratulates Tom on his retirement from his impressive career, as his last day at Semex is today, Friday, March 31.
Tom started working for the Western Breeders Service, a member of Semex Canada's Marketing Group, in White City, Saskatchewan on April 1, 1975 as a lab manager. In the mid-70's most efforts were focused on custom collecting beef bulls. Tom moved to UBI (United Breeders Inc, predecessor of Gencor and EastGen) in 1979. In September 2002, Tom joined Semex as a Technical Specialist working directly with the Semex partner semen production and sire care groups. In about 2005 he took on the role of Director, Production and Quality Control, followed in 2012 with his current role as Director, Laboratory and Quality Control within Semex's HPD (Operations) division.
Tom comments, "One of my most rewarding, exciting and high-pressure experiences was being part of the production operations at our facilities in Brazil, China and Hungary. In the mid-90's Semex moved towards global production, with a joint venture in Hungary that became 100% Semex-owned in 2004. This centre houses our EU-sourced sires, with its production being exportable to North America and other countries. I have been working with this centre since 1997, focused on semen quality, production and process improvements.”

Congratulations and thank you from all of us at Semex to Tom Kroetsch! 
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Semex Sires Dominate Globally In December 2016

As the world’s fastest growing genetic solutions company, Semex sires continued to show their prowess globally with the December 2016 genetic evaluations. Highlights include:


December 2015 graduate, 0200HO02792 Sandy-Valley Saloon continues to top the GTPI list at #3 GTPI in December 2016!  This globally popular A2A2 sire is now+2637 with +2489 PTAM, +172 CFP and the best PTAT in the top five GTPI at +2.92!
Immunity+™ sire 0200HO06528 De-Su Nominee graduates as the #12 GTPI sire at +2550 GTPI, +0.03% for Fat and Pro, with great +6.9 PL, low 2.63 SCS, a +4.6 DPR and 6.4% SCE making him a HealthSmart™, Calving Ease, A2A2 and GrazingPro™!
Semex sires occupy eight of the top 20 PTAT positions and are led by global superstar, Immunity+ and A2A2 sire 0200HO06480 Val-Bisson Doorman +3.59. Doorman is also Canada's #1 Conf Sire at +18 and is the new #2 LPI Sire at +3190! Doorman was a leading sire at both World Dairy Expo and the Royal Winter Fair, underscoring his status as a ShowTime™ sire.
Calving Ease specialist 0200HO03895 Boldi VSG Airintake graduates in December at 6.1% SCE with exceptional +2.36 PTAT, +2.78 UDC, +2.03 FLC and +4.1 PL. He also ranks as #7 LPI sire with great functional and conformation figures. Dairymen tell us they're very pleased with their daughters and that he's working well in all environments.


Beyond North America, 200HO sires continued to dominate listings:

0200HO10777 Westcoast Perseus #1 PLI at Ł779
0200HO10659 Stantons Applicable #1 UK Type Merit
0200HO10624 Silverrridge Allclass #2 UK Type Merit
0200HO06267 Gen-I-Beq Lavaman #1 PLI UK Proven Sire
0200HO10744 Boldi V Gymnast #1 RZG


200JE sires had a great December evaluation, with G-Code bulls excelling once again:

#3 0200JE00913 Faria Brothers Messi {5}: +282 GJPI, 779 CM$ and a HealthSmart™ sire
#11 0200JE01065 Legendairy Moneybag {5}: +264 GJPI and an Immunity+ sire
#20 0200JE01058 Sun Valley Jolt {5}: +249 GJPI and an A2A2 ... Read More...

Immunity+®: Hottest Lineup In Herd Health

With over 20 years of research in immunogenetics and associated health benefits, immune response is highly effective and 30% heritable. This means that each generation bred to an Immunity+ sire is expected to reduce disease incidence by at least 5-10%!   "Working with our clients globally, we’re seeing the benefits of Immunity+ on herd health," says Paul Krueger, Semex Immunity+ Global Brand Manager. "There are other health solutions but none are like our exclusive Immunity+ and none are 30% heritable."   "In December, we increased our Immunity+ genetic offering with eight more sires ranking over +2600 GTPI, and 14 more over +2500 GTPI. It's a genetic solution for herd health with no genetic sacrifice."   In its elite Genomax™ lineup, Semex now has: 81 Genomax Immunity+ bulls over +2400 GTPI 51 Genomax Immunity+ bulls over +2500 GTPI 18 Genomax Immunity+ bulls over +2600 GTPI 14 Genomax Jersey Immunity+ bulls 8 Genomax Ayrshire Immunity+ bulls   This Holstein group is led by 0200HO10648 Endco Apprentice *RC (Kingboy x Supersire x Alchemy), who is the #2 Kingboy available in the breed at +2753 GTPI with a +8.0 PL, +2.4 DPR, +862 NM$, positive deviations and solid +2.43 PTAT and +2.22 UDC. He's also HealthSmart™, RobotReady™, Red & White and GrazingPro™. His dam is a VG-85 Supersire x VG-85 Alchemy x EX-95-2E Altitude, the dam of the famous Apple, making him popular worldwide!  
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Semex recognizes the need for cattle that are most profitable in a pasture-based production environment. This means sires that yield high components, produce progeny of a limited size while maintaining strength, durability and mobility. Efficiency is the key to good grazing animals. Semex’s GrazingPro sires will maximize component yield and put focus on health and reproductive traits to ensure highly profitable, long-lasting animals with limited problems. These animals will also ensure easier calvings and create more, darker coloured calves. GrazingPro sires are designed to make management in grazing environments as effortless as possible, while maximizing profitability and peace of mind. “These sires have been selected to be efficient, long-lasting animals that will provide high component yields and good reproductive performance,” says Dr. Steven Larmer, Semex Dairy Solutions Coordinator. “GrazingPro sires are also chosen for their limited calf size, good feet & legs and udder composite, limiting mobility and udder health problems. They are also selected for coat colour, ensuring no problems with fair-skinned animals in sunny climates. On average they are 30% better for component yield than other sires, have higher daughter pregnancy rates (1.3% higher), less difficult calvings (0.8% lower) and have 14% lower Somatic Cell Scores on average. Overall this means more profitability on pasture than other sires.”
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