The New Zealand sheep industry has been supported by a national sheep recording scheme, Sheeplan, for nearly 20 years. Sheeplan is directed towards genetic improvement of the national sheep flock. Its personnel have recently prepared a plan for future development which aims to extend the scope of the scheme, the accuracy of selection decisions made and the flexibility and efficiency of the recording service. It is proposed that the improved scheme be developed under Sheeplan's existing organisation as a centralised recording scheme and that restructuring of the data storage and data processing system be undertaken to enable Sheeplan to develop the following specific areas: improved adjustments for non-genetic factors; greater breeding value accuracy; development of across-flock relationships among animals; extension of the Sheeplan database; establishment of an industry-wide database; improved operational efficiency; accommodation of electronic developments for data collection and transmission; provision of opportunities for data analysis; and improve documentation of the scheme. The estimated financial benefit of implementing the plan is a doubling of the annual return to the sheep industry, from $9.6 million from the current Sheeplan to $19.7 million. This is achieved through a 40% increase in accuracy of selection decisions; a 10% increase in Sheeplan membership; and a 30% increase in effective use of Sheeplan records.
Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 46, , 101-104, 1986
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