The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) wants to hear from the dairy industry and others on how the dairy herd improvement regulatory regime can help to ensure that New Zealand's dairy industry remains world leading.

"The dairy herd improvement regulatory regime has not been comprehensively reviewed since it was established in 2001," says Emma Taylor, MPI's director of agriculture, marine and plant policy.

"It's important the dairy herd improvement regulatory regime reflects the changing needs of the dairy industry. It's timely to look at how the regulatory settings can better support industry both now and into the future.

"Dairy herd improvement adds substantial value to New Zealand's dairy industry, estimated at around $300 million each year."

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Farmers have been testing samples of milk from their dairy cattle and recording data to inform their herd management decisions for over a century.

To achieve optimal rates of genetic gain, it needs a comprehensive, accurate and continuous supply of data to inform decisions on herd management and breeding.

"The regulatory regime contributes to the breeding of more productive dairy animals through herd testing, herd recording, animal evaluation and artificial breeding," says Emma.

"It also has the potential to support better environmental and animal health outcomes.

"We want to hear from people about how the regulatory regime can more effectively support the performance of the dairy industry. We also want to hear from industry on the effects of changing technology and the future implications on the dairy herd improvement sector."

- The consultation runs until 5pm Monday, November 12. More at www.mpi.govt.nz