A Third Breed, The Key To Crossbreeding Success

Take your crossbred herd to the next level and introduce a third breed to your breeding programme. Including a third breed such as the VikingRed or Norwegian Red gives you the tools you need to better manage your breeding rotation, maintaining a balanced herd while gaining superior Heterosis.

VikingRed future of efficiency

Three Way Cross, the key to efficiency

The Three Way Cross empowers farmers with the ability to breed cattle that can combine; feed conversion efficiencies, superior health traits, dairy beef capabilities, and the herd’s overall ability to get back in calf each year. With a Three Way Cross breeding rotation the hybrid vigor or heterosis of your crossbred herd is optimised.

Hybrid Vigor or Heterosis
in Crossbreeding

hybrid vigor or heterosis in a three way cross

The benefit of crossbreeding is the ability to combine traits and take advantage of Heterosis. The benefits ofHeterosis include; increased fertility, increased production, superior health traits and increased longevity.

Heterosis is proven to increase production and profits, so how do we optimise our herds Heterosis? Using three breeds in a crossbreeding programme yields a higher % of stabilized Heterosis(around 86%) vs the common two way cross (around 50%).

Key potential benefits of a Three Way Cross

+ Adaptability to climate change
  (Heat & cold tolerance)
+ Reduction in the use of antibiotics
  (Improved udder, hoof and general health)
+ Environmental Sustainability
+ Reduction in Bobbies

+ Introduce Polled
+ Reduce metabolic issues
+ Reduced workload
+ Improved fertility
+ Longevity
+ Amplify all these benefits with Heterosis

Three Way Cross Stories In New Zealand

Jude & Chris Stacey | Thriving with the Three-Way Cross - A Story of Teamwork and Innovation

Near Te Awamutu in Korakonui, the Stacey family faced challenges with their herd’s ability to withstand the rolling and steep terrain, the Stacey family implemented a crossbreeding strategy to add resilience and adaptability while still maintaining their production of milk solids. Riddings Farm is led by Chris and Jude Stacey, together with their children Tom and Stella, and supported by workers Bert and Charlie. They manage a 450-cow operation with 155 hectares of milking platform, and more land for young stock, beef on dairy animals, and native bush.

Shelley Krieger | The Value of Good Genetics

As a dairy stock agent for NZ Farmers Livestock, Shelley Krieger visits and sells cattle from all types of herds across Southland. Shelley gets excited when she is visiting other Samen NZ-bred herds.

Bart Luijten | VikingRed Unlocks Superior Heterosis

Bart and Martina Luijten farm 440 cows in Winton, Southland New Zealand. For Bart and Martina, it is all about having fun farming with their family and enjoying the lifestyle of a dairy farmer...

Doug and Emma McLeod | Strategic Genetics Make Sharemilking Profitable

Across New Zealand, farmers use genetics to ease pressure in their pasture-based dairy systems by breeding more efficient cattle with the Three Way Cross...

Kent & Anna Spittle | Three Way Cross Success with a Side of Dairy Beef

The Spittles milk 500 cows, Kiwi Cross herd. Two years ago, they started doing the three-way cross with Samen and so they've got two crops of calves on the ground, first crop the yearlings are in calf to a Norwegian red so they'll calf down 2022.

Backed by Research

A study conducted by Dairy Australia, the national service body for the Australian dairy industry compared the different crossbreds and purebred herds on a pasture-based system. 
In the latest study, published in 2019, the entity analysed data from more than 23 million lactation records from almost 900,000 cows on more than 18,000 farms.

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Selecting A Third Breed

When selecting a third breed it is important to think about your farms challenges and the traits you want to introduce into your herd. The two most common third breeds added into a traditional NZ Friesian x Jersey herd has been either the VikingRed or Norwegian Reds. Each offers a powerful outcross, medium sized cattle and polled options. Other options include; Fleckvieh, Montbeliarde, Abondanceand Normande.