January 14, 2020
India to import US cattle sex sorting technology to curb stray cattle problem
Giriraj Singh, Union Minister for Animal Husbandry, Dairy and Fisheries said the technology from the United States will be able to remove or 'sort' Y chromosomes in bull's sperm cells, reported Press Trust of India.
In India, male calves are thought to be a financial burden to farmers as it is unable to produce milk. These calves are either killed or abandoned, resulting in a large number of stray cattle on the street.
The import of US cattle sex sorting technology comes under the Union government's breed improvement programme and has a 90% guarantee that only female calves will be born.
The technology is expected to arrive by September this year for use in 600 districts in India.
Singh said the costs for artificial insemination of sexed semen will drop to 100 INR (~US$1.41) per dose, lower than the Rs 1,200 (~US$16.93) it costs currently.
According to the minister, use of artificial insemination technology is only close to 24% at present even though the programme was introduced in 1970.
In sexed semen, Y chromosomes in sperm cells are eliminated through a 'sorting' process or killed, resulting in semen with only X chromosomes. This ensures a 90% chance for a female calf to be born.
- Press Trust of India