No less than 152 young breeders took part in the YBS, with a record of 91 female participants to give a feminine touch to the event. This edition was marked by a first Belgian Blue version of the training.
Marie Françoise Meurs, Dairy Cattle Service Department
An international training « with a feminine touch »
The Young Breeders School took place from 30th August till 4th September, in close collaboration with the Battice Agricultural Fair and, this year again, the event rhymed with success and enthusiasm. Registrations closed very quickly ; and no less than 152 young breeders gathered in a friendly atmosphere, with a record of 91 female participants, which gave the event a feminine touch.
This 5-day training, available in 4 different languages, remains an unmissable international event in terms of learning techniques for competition preparation, as evidenced by the participation of 16 different countries and the arrival of a new nation this year: New Zealand.
Although some young people are used to the experiment, this year was the first time for a significant number of young breeders, which reinforces our desire to go further with our training school.
Strong return of the Belgian teams with something new for some of them!
Supporting young breeders, particularly Belgians, who want to learn more and promote their breed, remains the driving force behind this school.
This is why, in addition to the 4 Walloon teams participating in Holstein, the YBS for the first time enthusiastically opened its doors to 3 Belgian Blue teams. After waiting for 9 years, 15 young people, proud and impatient to participate, took part in a training focused on our national meat breed.
In addition to the members of the organization (Elevéo team) and the collaboration with Holstein Quebec, the supervision of young people during the event is carried out by a team of preparers, showmen recognized internationally and for the Belgian Blue by the BB Herd Book, supported by Elevéo technicians with experience in animal preparation.
The school in a few words :
The satisfaction of being able to parade in a ring and highlight your farm comes first and foremost through a judicious selection of your livestock. This is why, during the 3 days of training preceding the competitions, the young people attend workshops about developing an exhibition stand, feeding, shearing and learning presentation techniques for competition animals. The school also offers a classification workshop and a heifer and cow judging exercise, teaching the basics of good selection.
We were lucky to welcome 8 cows from the Haumont-Hill breeding farm from J-L Neuville for the Holstein judging workshop and to count on the breeding farm De Waleffes farm of Manu Laruelle which welcomed the BB participants for the workshops judging and farm clipping.
Finally, to be complete, the training also includes a marketing course aimed at learning how to stand out and how to highlight your breeding farm and breed.
Putting the training into practice :
Throughout the weekend, participants will put into practice the techniques and advice received from their leaders during the week.
On Saturday, the Canadian judge Y. Labbé, accompanied by his wife and ringmaster N. Bilodeau, judged the heifers lent by our Walloon breeders for the event. EHB Soucieuse Alleyoop (Alleyoop) from E. Boutry (Ostiches, Hainaut) won the champion title, followed by Utopie de l’Escaillois (Haniko) from C. Lagneau, the reserve. The winning trio is completed by EHB Savane Hanans (Hanans) also from the Boutry family.
For the BB competition, the task of deciding between the competitors of the day fell to Q. Pierrard, former winner of the BB young school and of the YBS as well.
Sunday morning was dedicated to YBS showmanship. Félix Lemire (Canada) in Holstein and the very young Romain Pétillon (Belgium) in BB won the title of best showman for the excellent mastery of their animal and the art of handling.
Among the Holstein representatives, 3 countries stood out for their results in the competition:
Germany with 3 young people in the top 20 and 2 teams in the top 3 of the best teams prize
Switzerland with 3 young people (including the school winner) in the top 20 and the prize for the best team
Canada who remains the leader with 4 young people in the top 20, the best clipper and the best presenter.
Congratulations also to the first young Walloon, Harold Baudoin, for his excellent performance during this edition!
Among the young of the BB teams, the following teams stood out throughout the week:
Belgian Blue Dreamer with the best clipper, the best judge, the best presenter and the best team
Belgian Blue Horizon with the prize of the best team
Belgian Blue Swing with the YBS winner
The big winner is Aurélien DURANT
The entire YBS team also warmly thanks the 38 host families who accommodated a large number of the young participants, the numerous volunteers for the setting up and preparing the marquee under difficult conditions (poor weather!), the breeders who lent heifers for the event as well as numerous parents who came to encourage and support our budding breeders. Let us also highlight the wonderful moment of sharing between all people involved in this great adventure during the world tour of Gastronomy on Saturday evening.