Gert and Sonja Schrijver of Marsfield Holsteins dairy farm were named 2018 Master Breeders. Contributed

Stettler dairy farmers win prestigious national ‘Master Breeders’ award

Highest award given by Holstein Canada

By Emily Jaycox

For the Independent

Gert and Sonja Schrijver of Marsfield Holsteins dairy farm were named 2018 Master Breeders, the highest national award given by Holstein Canada to its members.

“That’s a lifetime accomplishment based on genetics, production and longevity,” said Gert Schrijver.

The award is given to breeders with the best ratio for breeding cows with high production, reproduction and health.

Schrijver, who serves on the Alberta board for Holstein Canada, says the award goes to show that Alberta dairy farmers can compete, both nationally and with the rest of the world.

“It sure shows as a farmer that you can compete.”

Marsfield Holsteins in located south of Stettler on Hwy 56.

The Schrijvers won “breeder of the year,” a provincial award, in 2009, and have been working toward Master Breeder for the past 15 years, says Schrijver.

His farm is now one of the top milk-producing dairy farms in Canada.

“It’s a great recognition of what you do as a farmer.”

READ MORE: Knickers the cow is too beefy to become burgers

Schrijver is an Alberta board member for the Dairy Farmers of Canada association.

Schrijver says he is very dedicated to improving the Canadian dairy industry.

“The Canadian dairy industry has been good to us so it means a lot to me to leave it better for the next generation.”

He spends a lot of time in Ottawa in his role as board member, and for the past 10 years, people have come from all over the world to tour his farm.

In October, he visited a farm in South Korea.

Marsfield Holsteins has brought attention to the Stettler area and helps to put the town “on the map,” says Schrijver.

“That’s a very important factor in farming – that you support your local community.”

The association has 12,000 members, and only 20 are awarded the top accolade each year.

READ MORE: Moving from Holstein to Fleckvieh breed was an easy choice, says Haustein

Holstein Canada announces the Master Breeder winners at the beginning of each year for the previous year.

The winners are awarded at Holstein Canada’s annual a convention, to be held in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island from April 24 to 27.

The crowning event of the convention will be the Master Breeders’ gala, with 800 people expected to attend.

Schrijver’s parents will be coming from Holland to see him receive the award.

His father was very active in breeding in the Netherlands, says Schrijver.

“The fact he is still able to come and celebrate is special too.”

Schrijver and his wife immigrated to Canada from Holland in 1996.

It usually takes a lifetime to build up a significant herd, and Marsfield Holsteins has done it in 20 years, says Schrijver.

“I’m pretty proud of that.”

Like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter

Send us news tips to:



lisa.joy@stettlerindependent.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Larry
Reeve Larry Clarke reappointed for another one-year term, leading into elections in 2021

Clarke was acclaimed during council’s recent organizational meeting held Oct. 21st

Ember
Stettler’s own Ember Graphics takes Board of Trade 2020 Business Service Award

The 2020 Business and Citizenship Awards Gala was held Oct. 22nd

lights
Mark your calendars for the annual ‘Festival of Lights’ holiday events

Annual celebration raises funds in support of patient care at the Stettler Hospital

Nate Horner
Nate Horner stops by Castor’s Paintearth Lodge on Oct. 19th

Another hot topic during the discussion was the visitor restrictions put in place to protect the residents

Royal Alexandra Hospital front-line workers walk a picket line after walking off the job in a wildcat strike in Edmonton, on Monday, October 26, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta labour board orders health-care staff who walked off the job to go back to work

Finance Minister Travis Toews said in a news release that he was pleased with the labour board’s decision

Sharon Hickin, general manager of the Days Inn Sylvan Lake and the new Lake House Diner, poses for a photo outside the new restaurant. Photo by Megan Roth/Sylvan Lake News
Pandemic puts extra hurdles in place for new Sylvan Lake businesses

Over the past seven months numerous new businesses have opened in Sylvan Lake, despite the pandemic

file photo
Maskwacis RCMP investigate pedestrian fatality

Collision on Highway 2A causing fatality still under investigation.

Royal Alexandra Hospital front-line workers walk a picket line after walking off the job in a wildcat strike in Edmonton, on Monday, October 26, 2020. Hospital and health-care workers who staged a one-day illegal walkout returned to work Tuesday while politicians swapped recriminations and accusations in the house over the dispute. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta health staff return to work, surgeries resume after one-day walkout

AHS estimated 157 non-emergency surgeries, most of them in Edmonton, had to be postponed as a result of the walkout

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau makes his way to provide an update on the COVID pandemic in Ottawa on Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020. Canada has reached a grim milestone in the COVID-19 pandemic, surpassing 10,000 novel coronavirus deaths. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Alberta COVID deaths pushes Canada past milestone of 10,000 deaths

Canada crossed the threshold of 5,000 deaths on May 12, a little over two months after the first was reported

Cases in Ponoka (East Ponoka County) as of Oct. 27. (alberta.ca)
Diagnosed cases of COVID-19 at three Ponoka businesses

Town ‘strongly encouraging’ residents to wear non-medical masks in public

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau provides an update on the COVID pandemic during a press conference in Ottawa on Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Trudeau says pandemic ‘really sucks,’ and that Christmas gatherings are up in the air

The prime minister encouraged residents to continue to follow the advice of local health authorities

The Williams Lake Indian Band is stipulating no-go zones for mushroom picking in areas burned by last summer’s wildfires. 100 Mile Free Press photo
Who controls mushroom harvesting on Indigenous lands?

‘We don’t necessarily know where the mushrooms grow, how old the stands need to be, those types of things.’

Canadian and American flags fly near the Ambassador Bridge at the Canada/USA border crossing in Windsor, Ont. on Saturday, March 21, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Rob Gurdebeke
U.S. election results one factor that could impact immigration to Canada next year

The survey polled 1,523 Canadians between Oct. 23 and Oct. 25

Most Read