Thousands of dollars worth of bull semen has been destroyed after a cattle building exploded in fire early this morning.
Emergency services were called to Yarram Herd Services in Gippsland, Victoria, at about 3am where 100 cryogenic cylinders containing cattle semen exploded in the blaze.
It took 10 fire crews more than two hours to contain the fire at the building, which is a cattle breeding service.
Yarram Herd Services' committee vice-chairman Aaron Thomas said the loss would be a "huge blow" for farmers, with the cylinders worth between $500 and $1000 each.
AdvertisementAdvertise with NZME.
"We're coming into the artificial insemination (AI) season so there would have been substantial amounts of semen inside the tanks that we've lost which was owned by our local farmers, and it can range in value from $5 per straw to $95 per straw," he told the ABC.
"A lot of farmers would have semen stock in the building, in those tanks, preparing for AI, so we've got that plus all of our herd testing equipment that was in there as well.
"So this is significant damage and it is going to have a flow-on affect on Yarram, especially after the drought that Yarram district has experienced over the last 12 months, it's going to be a real blow for sure."
The not-for-profit organisation provides AI, breeding advice, calf dehorning, herd testing and freeze-branding services for farmers in the area.
All the equipment was also damaged in the blaze.
CFA District 10 commander Chris Loeschenkoh said there was nothing salvageable.
Investigators are determining the cause.