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[Podcast] Lloyd Holterman, Rosy-Lane Holsteins – Pioneer on the genomics frontier

Progressive Dairy Published on 17 November 2020

In this episode, Editor Peggy Coffeen sits down with dairyman Lloyd Holterman to discuss all things genomics, from the early adoption of genetic technology to developing the cows in the Rosy-Lane Holsteins herd today. Holterman discusses how laser-focused, data-driven genetic selection has enabled him to create a more sustainable cow that that lives longer with fewer health incidents and greater feed efficiency. 

Learn about his strategy, and hear this dairyman’s thoughts on inbreeding, genetic research and the direction of the industry.



(~1:20) Q: Describe your genomics journey: What intrigued you about genomics early on?

(~4:38) Q: Which indexes and/or traits do you emphasize in genetic selection? 

(~7:30) Q: What are some of the successes with your herd that you attribute to genetic progress made through genomics? 

(11:21) Q: Talk a little bit about your policy and your outlook on zero antibiotic use in the milking herd and how that relates back to the disease resistance and some genetic decisions you made?

(~14:43) Q: How would you have defined your best cow in the barn 10 years ago? How do you define her today?

(~21:10) Q: Describe the current genetics program at Rosy-Lane Holsteins today. How do you use genomics and genomic testing?

(~26:00) What’s your structure and strategy for determining which females are bred to sexed semen, beef, etc.?

(~31:00) Q: What are your goals for the herd?

(~32:00) Q: Does inbreeding concern you? Why or why not?

(~34:35) Q: Let’s talk about genomics on a larger scale – beyond your own barn:

  • What do you see as the greatest opportunities for genomics to serve the dairy industry in a positive way?
  • Where do you see its shortcomings?

(~37:15) Q: Which traits do you believe require more research and attention?

(~39:00) Q: When it comes to genetic priorities and the current pool of available sires, does our industry have it right?

(~42:30) As we wrap up, I have a final set of quick, rapid-fire questions for you to provide a short answer to:

  1. Favorite bull you’ve ever used in your herd
  2. Most influential bull of all time
  3. Best cow you’ve ever bred
  4. What young genomic sire will be the next “big thing”?
  5. Best advice you ever received?
  6. Best advice you could give to other dairy producers listening to this podcast?


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