Wagyu BREEDPLAN EBV’s explained



An animal’s breeding value is its genetic merit, half of which will be passed on to its progeny. While we will never know the exact breeding value, for performance traits it is possible to make good estimates. These are called Estimated Breeding Values (EBVs). The EBV is, therefore, the best estimate of an animal’s genetic merit for that trait. EBVs are expressed as the difference between an individual animal’s genetics and the genetic base to which the animal is compared.


An accuracy value is presented with every EBV and gives an indication of the amount of information that has been used in the calculation of that EBV. The higher the accuracy, the lower the likelihood of change in the animal’s EBV as more information is analysed for that animal or its relatives.

Accuracy Range                  Interpretation

o   Less than 50% = Low accuracy and should be considered a preliminary estimate. The EBV could change substantially as more performance information becomes available.

o   50 – 74% = Medium accuracy, usually based on the animal’s own records and pedigree.

o   75 – 90% = Medium-high accuracy and usually includes some progeny information. Becoming a more reliable indicator of the animal’s value as a parent.

o   90% and above = High accuracy.


  • GL: Gestation Length EBV (days) is based on AI records. Lower (negative) GL EBVs indicate shorter gestation lengths which generally relate to lighter birth weights and easier calving.
  • BWT: Birth Weight EBV (kg) is based on the measured birth weight of animals, adjusted for dam age. The lower the value the lighter the calf at birth and the lower the likelihood of a difficult birth. This is particularly important when selecting sires for use over heifers calving at 2 years of age.


  • 200-Day Milk EBV (kg) is an estimate of an animal’s milking ability. For sires, this EBV is indicative of their daughter’s milking ability as it affects the 200-Day weight of their calves.
  • 200: 200-Day Growth EBV (kg) is calculated from the weight of animals taken between 80 and 300 days of age. Values are adjusted to 200 days, and dam age. This EBV is the best single estimate of an animal’s genetic merit for growth to early ages.
  • 400: 400-Day Weight EBV (kg) is calculated from the weight of progeny taken between 301 and 500 days of age, adjusted to 400 days and dam age. This EBV is the best single estimate of an animal’s genetic merit for yearling weight.
  • 600: 600-Day Weight EBV (kg) is calculated from the weight of progeny taken between 501 and 900 days of age, adjusted to 600 days and for dam age. This EBV is the best single estimate of an animal’s genetic merit for growth beyond yearling age.


  • SS: Scrotal Size EBV (cm) is an indicator of male fertility in regard to semen quality and quantity in Western cattle breeds. Higher (positive) EBVs indicate higher fertility. There is also a favourable genetic relationship with age of puberty in female progeny. The relationship between scrotal size and fertility in Wagyu is assumed, but not proven.


  • Carcase Weight EBV (kg) is based on abattoir carcase records and live weight measurements (particularly at 600-Day weight) and is an indicator of the genetic differences in carcase weight at the industry average slaughter age of 990 days. Larger positive values are more favourable.
  • EMA: The EMA EBV (cm2) estimates genetic differences in eye muscle area at the 12/13th rib site of a 420kg dressed carcase. More positive EBVs indicates larger eye muscle area and higher retail beef yields. Ultrasound, Aus-Meat and Japanese Digital Image Camera measurements contribute to this EBV.
  • Rump Fat: The Rump Fat EBV (mm) estimates the genetic differences in fat depth at the P8 site of a 420kg dressed carcase. More positive EBVs indicate more subcutaneous fat and earlier maturity.
  • RBY: The Retail Beef Yield Percent EBV (%) estimates the gentic differences in total (boned out) meat yield as a percentage of a 420kg dressed carcase. A more positive EBV indicates higher percentage yield for the 420kg carcase weight.
  • Marble Score EBV: The Aus-Meat Marble Score is an estimate of the genetic difference in the Marble Score in a 420kg carcase. Marble Score EBVs utilise the Aus-Meat Marble Score scale of 1 to 10, where 10 is equivalent to 9+. Where results from the Japanese Digital Image Camera are available, marbling percentage and fineness are also used to calculate Marble Score EBVs. Larger postitive values are more favourable.
  • Marble Fineness EBV (Marbling Fineness Index) estimates the genetic differences in the Marbling Fineness Index (degree of fleck of marbling fat) as measured by the Japanese Digital Image Camera. A more positive EBV indicates higher levels of marbling fineness.



In addition to the EBVs for Sire, Dam and Young bulls, are three BreedObject Indexes, developed specifically for Wagyu to enable selection for profitability in Wagyu. The three $Indexes are designed to optimise profit outcomes for commercial Self-replace, Fullblood Terminal and F1 Terminal production systesm. The three indexes are:

  • Self-replacing Breeding $Index (SRI)
  • Fullblood Terminal $Index (FTI)
  • F1 Terminal $Index (F1I)

Learn more about the BreedObject Indexes


For benchmarking, use the latest percentile bands for Wagyu calves. Further information can be found on the BREEDPLAN  website.


The Wagyu Breeding Guide is a suite of carcase EBVs capable of predicting the genetic merit of a wide range of Wagyu sires and dams and BreedObject $Indexes, ranking animals  based on performance and carcase data records.

It is designed to enable breeders to apply their own priorities and select appropriate sire and dam breeding for the herd. Where the seedstock genetics are unavailable, a review of pedigrees will provide an alternative selection guideline.

This document is a unique milestone for the Wagyu breed both in Australia and internationally. It has been achieved through a funding partnership with Meat & Livestock Australia and support provided by AGBU and ABRI.

Divided in two parts, the introduction outlines the genetic background of Wagyu; the second document provides the EBV summary data and will be updated on a monthly basis.

Wagyu Breeding Guide Introduction 2019 (pdf  4.7Mb)

AWA Sire and Dam EBV Summaries:

Disclaimer – It is important that you appreciate when viewing the AWA database that the information contained on the AWA database, including but not limited to, pedigree, DNA information, Estimated Breeding Values (EBVs) and Index values, is based on data supplied by members and/or third parties.

Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the information reported through AWA, the AWA officers and employees assume no responsbility for its contetn, use of interpretation. AWA disclaims all liability (including without limitation, liability in negligence) for all expenses, losses, damages and costs you may incur as a result of the use of the data on this AWA database and the information supplied by Agricultural Business Research Institute (ABRI) and Animal Genetics and Breeding Unit (AGBU) being inaccurate or incomplete in any way for any reason.

It is very important to appreciate and you need to be aware that:

  • EBVs are derived using Wagyu Single-Step BREEDPLAN technology developed independently by the Animal Genetics and Breeding Unit (AGBU), using the information contained within the AWA database.
  • AGBU is a joint venture of NSW Department of Primary Industries and the University of New England, which receives funding for this purpose from Meat and Livestock Australia Limited.
  • AWA relies solely on advice provided by AGBU and ABRI in accepting Wagyu Single-Step BREEDPLAN software.
  • EBVs pubished in Wagyu Single-Step BREEDPLAN are estimates of genetic potential of individual animals and may not reflect the raw animal phenotype.
  • EBVs can only by directly compared to other EBVs calculated in the same monthly Wagyu Group BREEDPLAN run.

Regarding pedigree and DNA testing results submitted to the AWA, it is very important to appreciate, and you need to be aware that:

  • Pedigree and DNA data submitted and supplied to AWA may have errors in it which cannot be detected without further DNA testing.
  • Technology may have advanced since a particular test was undertaken so that previous inaccuracies which were not detectable are now able to be detected by current testing technology.
  • AWA estimates that less than 1% of the pedigree entries in the AWA Herdbook may have errors or which may be misleading.   For this reason, users ought to consider if they need to obtain independent testing of the relevant animal (if possible) to ensure that the data is accurate.

If you consider that you do not understand or appreciate the nature and extent of the data provided on this website or the eBVs of a particular animal then AWA strongly recommends that you seek independent expert advice.