One year ago, PIC, the global leader in swine genetics, and Otrada, one of the largest swine genetics producers and distributors in Russia, signed a strategic cooperation agreement. Otrada has become the exclusive partner of PIC and provides direct access to the highest quality genetics of PIC Danish Lines. How did the two companies' integration proceed, and what benefits did the strategic partnership bring to Russian pig producers?
Combining populations and the efforts of two companies striving for excellence and leadership, a world-class breeding program adapted for the local market, and high operating standards provide many advantages for Russian pig producers.
Straightaway from the start of cooperation, Otrada began importing the semen of purebred boars with the highest indexes from the PIC Gene Transfer Center in Western Europe. Despite the difficulties and restrictions caused by the new Coronavirus infection, regular deliveries were successfully introduced on all lines: Otrada Landrace, Otrada Yorkshire and Otrada Duroc. Access to one of the leading Danish farms' Elite genes was a significant step in accelerating genetic progress both at the Otrada sites and at customer sites.
Adapting and improving operation processes were the second big area for improvement. A separate highly professional breeding team has been built to take the lead in protocol integration and interaction with PIC specialists at the production level. The changes also affected the modernization of installed equipment and software: a scanner for assessing intramuscular fat, back fat and loin depth, pig performance testing stations, PICTraq program. The companies have also introduced world-class practices and entirely new approaches in genetics such as DNA testing, relationship-based genomic selection, and integration into PIC’s GNX program.
Much of the work was fulfilled, but there are still many challenges, ambitious goals and innovative projects ahead.