Left Continue shopping
Your Order

You have no items in your cart

Razze bovine

Discovering the Modicana cattle breed

Modicana cow, name nomen

The Modican breed cow tells of its origin and chooses to settle in the former county of Modica, in general we are talking about the province of Ragusa. Here it finds the perfect habitat and begins to expand, becoming a native Sicilian breed. However, many claim that its origins are very different, that it comes from northern Europe and has had to adapt to the - diametrically opposite - climate of southern Italy.

What needs to be underlined is the prevailing characteristic of the breed: resistance to a harsh or arid climate, which allows the Modica cows to grow independently and produce succulent, tasty and rich meat. The thesis that best responds to the origins remains that of the union of two different breeds from which the Modican cow was then created which has kept its highly prized characteristics intact.

The Modican cow and the number three

The animal's aptitude develops in different directions which enhances and keeps the prestige of the island breed intact. In the early days, the Modican cow was used as a labor animal, dedicated to the production of milk and used to obtain respectable meat.

Even today, the Modican breed of cow is known for its rustic and independent character which guarantees it easy adaptation to mountain and hilly climatic conditions.

The detail is the element that has allowed the bovine breed to invade the entire island: from Messina to Palermo, from Enna to Caltanissetta.

The name of the breed

To simplify and make the breed more recognisable, what they now call the "Modicana" was once the "Sicilian".

It will in turn be divided into two subcategories:

  • The Montanina . The cattle that usually graze in the mountains are characterized by a stocky and powerful structure, capable of resisting bad weather and adapting to the irregularities of the terrain.
  • The Mezzanine . The garments find their setting in hilly areas and are characterized by a slender and long-limbed structure.

From stars to extinction

Once upon a time it was the most coveted thing a breeder could have, but over time, and the evolution of slaughtering techniques, the need to develop vertical breeds capable of guaranteeing and excelling in a single direction has almost brought the Modican breed cow to extinction. Today, thanks to the regulations and the establishment of a genealogical register, the interest in the breed capable of achieving genetic improvement remains intact.

The arduous task was entrusted to Anarb - National Association of Brown Breed Breeders. To date, but everything is rapidly evolving, you can obtain certification of enhancement of the items present in your training.

Knowing that in Italy there are particular breeds with specific regulations that define their leaders, growth and breeding allows the map of the Bel Paese to be enriched with particularities and excellence. According to the Herd Book, today there are approximately 5,800 Modicana animals distributed across approximately 300 farms.

Selection of the Modican cow

Many breeders recognize the head due to its aesthetic characteristics: rustic and powerful, it has a reddish coat and lighter shades in females and tending towards black in males.

A large, powerful and angular structure which in terms of kilograms reaches 600 for females and 1000 for males. The height at the withers is also very respectable: 140 cm for females and 160 cm for males.

Technical specifications

Several elements differentiate the Sicilian breed from other versions present on Italian territory.

  • Medium size.
  • Coat: dark red tending to black.
  • Head: broad muzzle, long horns extending upwards.
  • Front: Long, massive neck. Rich dewlap with several folds.
  • Shoulders: close to the trunk with a chest and thorax of medium height and width.
  • Limbs: dry and resistant, to adapt to the difference in terrain.
  • Character: long and medium-sized nipples, broad-based breasts, raised and sinuous veins.

Image source: altrocene.it

From triple use to elite production

Breeding in the wild offers the animal the freedom to independently manage its diet and subsequent rumination.

At the same time the farmer can obtain respectable raw materials capable of underlining the importance of the area and the strength in the production of DOP branded products, an example above all the Caciocavallo Ragusano DOP, in addition to the Palermo, the canestrato and the provole .

Modicana milk therefore allows us to obtain respectable products capable of enhancing the qualities of a specific type of farming combined with the constant desire to keep customs and traditions intact.

After all, the Modican cow comes from far away and with attention and parsimony has chosen to adapt to the different areas of Sicily, also perfect for other territories, it prefers - obviously - training in the wild where it manages to enhance its rural and rustic characteristics.

Curiosity about the Modican cattle breed

In addition to products made from milk, there are other peculiarities that revolve around the Modican breed. In fact, the Slow Food presidium has chosen to place emphasis on the meat and, thanks to the improvement of production, it chooses to emphasize the marbling which is - almost - perfect. If it may appear a little tougher than other types of farming, choosing the perfect cut of meat allows you to enhance and underline the taste so as to trigger the desire to bring dishes made from particular breeds to the table.

The Sardinian Modican cattle breed is another example of an animal to take into consideration when you want to underline the Italian breeding ability and at the same time enhance tradition and all the methods handed down. The necessary technological evolution must be reconciled with the maintenance of the different cattle breeds present in the area, the Modican is an example, but in the Herd Book there are many other examples.