Bovine biotechnology company Vytelle has assembled what it terms the first integrated technology platform built to accelerate genetic progress in cattle. It says the tool will help farmers deliver more protein with fewer inputs, helping to safeguard meat and milk as viable, competitive food choices for future consumers.
Vytelle – formerly cattle in vitro fertilisation specialist Cogent IVF – is part of the Wheatsheaf Group, the investment fund within Cheshire-based Grosvenor Estates that promotes international agricultural innovation. Cogent IVF was formed in 2015 as a subsidiary of Grosvenor’s Cogent Breeding cattle genetics business, but when that business was sold to ST Genetics in 2017, Cogent IVF was retained, and subsequently rebranded as Vytelle.
Last year, Wheatsheaf integrated an earlier acquisition, GrowSafe Systems and its animal data capability into Vytelle to consolidate genetic evaluation and reproduction technologies into a single bovine biotechnology operation. Vytelle’s global headquarters is at Kansas City in the US. It recently opened a new laboratory in Dumfries to help UK dairy and beef farmers benefit from on-farm IVF.
The new Vytelle platform comprises three animal management products – Vytelle Sense, a proprietary individual animal data capture system to collect feed intake and in-pen weight measurements to identify high-performing animals; Vytelle Insight for better decision-making based on translating billions of cattle data points into knowledge that producers can use to monitor, predict and optimise overall animal performance; and Vytelle Advance, an advanced in vitro fertilisation (IVF) technique that doesn’t need follicle stimulating hormone treatment, and leads to shorter generation intervals, improved reproductive efficiency and the ability to multiply offspring from high-performing animals.
“With the world literally hungry for protein, and the recognition that our industry must meet rising food demand while reducing resource intensity, there is a clear need to integrate precision livestock technologies and support our customers in their production of sustainably sourced meat and milk,” says Vytelle chief executive Kerryann Kocher.
“Our goal at Vytelle is to close the feedback loop between genotype and phenotype, helping beef and dairy producers fast-forward generational advances by matching genetic traits to optimal outcomes for our customers and the environment.”