Brown Swiss

The impact of U.S. Brown Swiss bloodlines on the global dairy population is profound and will positively influence dairy herds for many generations. Brown Swiss were originally imported from Switzerland in 1869. The U.S. Brown Swiss Cattle Breeders Association was founded in 1880. The world’s Brown Swiss population is estimated to be approaching 4 million head. With registrations averaging near the 10,000 head level over recent years, Brown Swiss are currently the third largest dairy breed in the U.S.

Courtesy of Dominique Savary PC

The Brown Swiss Cattle Breeders’ Association of the USA represents the breed in the U.S.

Learn about Brown Swiss activities, programs and services

National Production Averages

The average annual milk production for U.S. Brown Swiss cows is well-documented by NDHIA through milk recording.

Genetic Conditions

Four genetic abnormalities have been observed in Brown Swiss: Weaver, Spiderleg, Spinal Dysmyelination and Spinal Muscular Atrophy. The breed also has one lethal haplotype, BH2. Genetic conditions are noted on registration papers and pedigrees to assist breeders in mating decisions.

Genomic Testing

The Brown Swiss Association encourages breeders to test their cattle to help identify future genetic improvers of the breed.

Total Merit Index: PPR

U.S. Brown Swiss animals are ranked on Progressive Performance Ranking (PPR). The current formula includes weights for:

  • Protein
  • Fat
  • Productive Life
  • Udder Composite
  • Mobility
  • Daughter Pregnancy Rate
  • Livability
  • Somatic Cell Score