Cogent Breeding Partners with Sainsbury’s and ABP to Grow Dairy Beef Supply Chain

Gamechanger, the industry leading integrated beef supply chain which has been in place since 2015, has widened its breeding options to farmers, partnering with Cogent as a service provider to offer access to a wider choice of genetics.

Cogent genetics are now available to Gamechanger producers in conventional semen, and from late March onwards producers will also have access to Ultraplus male sexed product. The move enables Sainsbury’s and ABP to grow the programme and further drive efficiencies and consistency of Aberdeen Angus calves entering the Gamechanger supply chain.

The Gamechanger programme currently includes over 500 farms, with aspirations to grow significantly. Farmers can be involved at different stages, whether calving, rearing or finishing. The programme is designed to offer security and stability to farmers across the supply chain with guaranteed forward pricing, and easy management at every stage, from conception to finishing.

Director of agriculture, horticulture and fisheries at Sainsbury’s, Gavin Hodgson, comments:

We are really pleased to have Cogent join us and our trusted partners to deliver our ambition of high quality, reduced carbon beef. We are committed to driving resilience at all levels of the supply chain, and to delivering a consistent product with a lower, more transparent hoof print that keeps quality British beef in our customers’ baskets.

Until now, farmers producing calves for the Gamechanger integrated supply chain have had access to Angus genetics from a single genetics provider. Now, with the addition of Cogent genetics, Sainsbury’s and ABP can continue to address current and future challenges, such as sustainability, efficiency and product quality across the entire supply chain, but with greater choice for the producer.

This expansion of the supply chain embraces the very best in Aberdeen Angus genetics to deliver consumer-friendly beef with transparency, traceability and reduced environmental impacts, as Richard Phelps, group agricultural director at ABP explains:

We are focussed on continuing to improve the Gamechanger programme, and are excited to be working with Cogent to offer our farmers a wider choice of genetics. This enables us to continue to provide the dairy farmers in our supply chain with a secure and profitable calf outlet to produce high quality, sustainable beef whilst maximising and delivering efficiency throughout.

Now, the end product, which is retailed as part of the Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference Aberdeen Angus beef range, will also be bred from dedicated elite Cogent sires, which have undergone extensive progeny testing. This testing enables Cogent to breed bulls with specific, repeatable traits tailored not only to the dairy system, but all aspects of an integrated supply chain, including ease of calving, gestation length, growth, performance and feed efficiency. Cogent managing director Stuart Boothman comments:

We are extremely proud to be joining the Gamechanger scheme, and to be providing Cogent genetics, including our Ultraplus male sexed product, to Gamechanger producers,” says Cogent managing director Stuart Boothman. At Cogent we recognise the fundamental role the dairy beef crossbred plays within today’s industry. We are delighted to showcase the strength and consistency of our beef on dairy programme, extending our elite Aberdeen Angus offering to the Gamechanger supply chain.