While I'm a fan of reinventing the wheel sometimes, I've often wondered why some are for or against it. When you think about breeding a jersey to an angus or a hereford to a simmental the outcome can be totally different depending on the situation that suits you and what outcome you're looking to achieve. 30 years ago, my grandma milked a fullblood jersey. Then, when breeding time came, she used the neighbor's hereford bull. That cow had a heifer so she was milking a 50/50 cross in a couple years. That 50/50 cross was bred to another neighbor's angus bull. She threw a heifer so grandma was eventually milking a 25/75 cross. Through the years I seen her continually use whatever neighbor's bull was available. She had a huge family with over 40 grandkids to supply milk to so it wasn't uncommon for her to be milking 4-5 cows per day. It was just something she enjoyed and was her place in life. Over the years, with all the continual crossbreeding to beef bulls, she was eventually milking a cow that was a very small percentage jersey. One of the best milk cows she had was an angus with lots of cream and good teats to handmilk. That being said, my grandma never had option to select semen for AI purposes from sires that had proven birthweights or weining weights. She just used whatever was available. Her cows were fed well from the garden leftovers and whatever hay she could muster up from neighbors and friends. It worked for her. No matter what heifer hit the ground, it got milked! Now..........that being said, with today's questions being raised of "Would you breed this heifer to this bull?" it depends on your personal situation. I do know that two people can both own a jersey cow and have access to the neighbor's angus bull. We can both breed them and have completely different outcomes. I may get a scrawny heifer that never has a chance at being a decent milker and won't hold good body condition and you might get one that holds body condition well while giving five gallons a day. That's just the way it works. No amount of research or genetic pooling can guarantee the outcome of the finished product. It's all for lack of better words, " a roll of the dice" to me. I've read some comments here on HT where one poster will say, "there's no way I would breed that heifer to that bull" while others will say, " that would be my cross of choice." It's all a matter of choice and a game of chance. With all the programs like the Jersey Association has going on to increase breed numbers, there's not that likely a chance to get 100% anything IMHO. So............now that I've vented my concerns about crossbreeding...............If you own a heifer and have access to the neighbor's bull for breeding.............Do whatever is easiest, most convenient, most economical, and most importantly, has the greatest chance of giving you the outcome you're interested in. I am, however, NOT giving ANYONE the advice to breed a first time heifer to a beef bull (or Holstein) unless it's a longhorn or something that is positively known to have low birthweight. I'm just saying do whatever you need to do to get a cow fresh. She's not gonna give milk unless she has a calf so get her bred. If your future intentions are to have a whole string of milkers, breed her to a milk bull. If you want to milk her and provide beef for the freezer, breed her to a beefer. Just my two cents here, but always remember that no matter what advice you're given on the "do's" or "don'ts" of crossbreeding, it's all just advice given based upon MY or HIS experiences. Your outcome could turn into disaster or turn out to be heavenly.