Bio-economic models for deriving economic values for cattle: a review

S. Slavova*, T. Angelova, J. Krastanov

Agricultural Institute, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 4 April 2022; accepted for publication 23 May 2022)

Abstract. Bio-economic models for deriving economic weights in livestock have a significant development in recent years providing integrated assessment of biological and economic parameters of production systems and possibilities for achieving economic sustainability through inclusion in the selection index. Economic weights (EW) of traits have been calculated for different species of farm animals in the years. However, this review focuses on large ruminant aiming to summarize studies on calculation of economic values for dairy, beef and dual-purpose cattle. A method of research selection was used according to the productive direction (for milk, meat and dual-purpose), as well as according to the studied traits. In conclusion, it could be summarized that with regard to breeding objectives, economic weights of breeding traits need to be recalculated at certain time-periods and redefined in order to be relevant to the current market situations. Recently, there has been a tendency for functional traits to have an increasing economic influence and some of them should be included in the breeding goal. Moreover, the increased interest among customers in animal welfare and quality of dairy farm products will probably lead to the incorporation of health traits as clinical mastitis incidence and somatic cells score in the breeding objective. It is possible as well the relative importance of feed efficiency traits to increase in the future due to increasing requirements to mitigate the environmental impact of production systems.