Matamata Veterinary Services | Latest News

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Importing

May 15, 2012

Importing semen from countries all over the world is a very effective and efficient method to not only introduce new genetics into a breed or population, but also to accelerate genetic gain. This is particularly important in a small country like New Zealand where the gene pool for many breeds can become limited.

New Zealand is one of, if not the strictest country to import equine semen into. New Zealand is a very lucky country to be free of so many diseases and maintaining this biosecurity is paramount. Given the costs involved with stud fees and importation costs, we recommend that initially you take the time to talk to us about what is involved in importing semen to New Zealand. It is much easier to liaise with the collection centre during the collection period to ensure all the correct tests are carried out before and after the semen is collected and frozen, as opposed to applying for dispensation from MPI if requirements are not fully met, which unfortunately is not always granted.

Besides all the MPI import requirements and paperwork, it is also important that you make informed decisions regarding what you are purchasing. Adequate numbers of straws and the quality of the frozen semen is paramount to optimising success after artificial insemination with frozen-thawed semen. There is nothing more disheartening than spending time and money on collecting, freezing and importing frozen semen from overseas, only to later find out that you have inadequate numbers of straws for the number of AI’s you wish to carry out.

Tips on Importing semen:

  • Give yourself plenty of time:
    Importing semen takes a lot of organisation in both countries and requires papers to be signed by government departments, which is a lengthy process!
  • Import as much semen as economically and practically feasible:
    The freight charges are calculated on weight and dimensions of the tank, so therefore it will cost you the same to import one dose as it would to import ten or more doses (except for the import GST).
  • Get as much information regarding the semen before committing to the purchase:
    i.e. quality, concentration, number of straws per dose, fertility history of the stallion, has the frozen semen been used successfully in breeding programmes, percentage normal sperm etc. We are more than happy to interpret this information for you and provide advice on the minimum number of straws that you will require per dose to meet the international minimum levels.
  • Sharing a semen tank to import semen:
    Do you have any like-minded breeders that may want to import semen from the same country as you? Where possible, we will combine shipments to make the process more economical for all involved. We work closely with a company in Australia where we import and export shipments to on a regular basis, so depending on the time frame in which the semen is required this may be an option for you.