VRB was born in 1980 when Mr B.V. RAO, founder of the Venkateshawara Group, has signed an agreement with Babcock (called now ISA Breeders Inc.,USA) in order to develop a specific breeding programme for the white Leghorns in India. A similar joint venture was signed at the same time with Cobb company to develop a breeding programme for the broilers.
After the shipment of the pure lines from Babcock, USA at the time of the creation of the joint venture, the breeding programme has been developed and managed by Dr G.L. Jain in the R&D facicities located near Pune, India. With his assistant dedicated for the layer breeding programme Dr Prakash Pabu, the Babcock white leghorn called in India BV300 has got the position of the leader. Its outstanding performances as its good adaptation to the local conditions (high liveability, good growth), its high productivity (high number of eggs with a relatively small egg size as required for the Indian market) makes this bird the number one in India during the last 2 decades.
And the efficient network developed with a dozen of Franchisee Hatcheries under the leadership of Venkateshwara Hatcheries, makes the distribution of the BV300 commercials well spread throughout India. An annual franchisee meeting is held in Pune in order to review all the aspects of the genetic evolution of the BV300 in relation with the market needs. Unfortunately and because of the Avian Influenza threat, this meeting planned in March2006 was postponed in 2007.
Within the new Hendrix Genetics, a first board meeting of VRB has been hold in July 2006, where Mr Thijs Hendrix, president of Hendrix Genetics, Dr George Ansah, geneticist in relation with VRB and Benoît Pelé, Hendrix Genetics director breeding sales were present. Mrs Anuradha Desai is the chairperson of the VRB board and welcomes warmly the members of HG. During this board meeting, an analysis of the Indian market was discussed and the position of the BV300 is confirmed with more than 85% of the Indian market.
A construction for a new R&D farm was approved, the land is already acquired and the final implementation of the poultry facilities is expected during the next year. This new R&D farm will increase the capacity of the R&D programme and will reinforce the biosecurity of the pure lines of BV300.
Hendrix Genetics is very pleased to see the place of leadership held by the Babcock BV300 in India through VRB.
Hendrix Genetics team thanks very much Mrs Anuradha Desai and her husband Mr Desai, Dr G.L. Jain and Dr P.Pabu for the warm welcome, the fruitful discussions and the nice visits done during this trip to Pune in July 2006.