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Razze EU

Cattle breeds and geography : the journey continues

A journey between taste and curiosity

Discovering little-known cattle breeds, or the starting point for particular crossbreeds, becomes essential to knowing - really - what meat to bring to the table and choosing Italian or foreign recipes capable of maximizing the taste of the meat. Although the love for the French cousins ​​in terms of culinary products is rather precarious, it should be underlined that the French region has several exceptional items that also find a perfect habitat in Italy.

The map of cattle breeds therefore chooses to delve deeper into what is present on French territory in order to make a point - once and for all, perhaps. The journey continues towards other regions arriving in Switzerland, where he finds a particular breed that is widely used and little known in Italy: Simmenthal, we need to find out more.

Salers cattle breed in France

The Salers cattle breed comes from an area located in the Massif Central: Auvergne. The dark red coat is associated with a size of 750 kg with a height of close to 140 cm.

The Salers breed is agile and resistant because, living in a rather rustic area, it has developed the art of making do, much preferring grazing in a semi-wild state.

As a result, the cuts of meat from the breed are marbled beyond measure and well calibrated in terms of meat-fat contrast. The use of the animal is dual, it responds well both to milk production and in terms of yield at the slaughterhouse.

Bazadais cattle breed - always - in France

To the south of the Gironde there is a region that pleases the eye by offering a sensation of balance: wide and extended plains fit perfectly into hinted and welcoming hills.

The visual overview is enriched by a bovine breed with a gray coat and an imposing and robust size: the Bazadaise.

The male reaches 145 cm in height and weighs around one ton, just to underline his presence.

Once upon a time, the area was rich in agricultural holdings and the French cattle breed was used as a work animal, but today it is referred to as a meat breed as it offers a good quality product without excesses.

Tarentaise cattle breed - still - in France

Moving in the Central Massif area you can admire a leader with a brown coat with small yellowish streaks, white horns with black tips and a rather small size.

The Tarentaise breed is perfect for milk production and not very suitable for slaughter as it offers little profit margin given the poor quality of the meat. Although it grows in inaccessible areas, the meat does not have a valid balance comparable to other breeds raised in the same conditions.

Breed Blonde D'Aquitaine - where else - in France

The sub-breeds that respond to the Blonde D'Aquitaine are: the Garonnese breed, the Blonde Pyrenees breed and the Quercy breed. Coming from the Central Massif area, they underwent a mini migration towards the south.

Not accustomed to milk production, it lends itself perfectly to making tasty, meat-rich cuts of meat.

An important size is combined with a Fromentine coat and a small head.

Excellent reproductive characteristics and fast growth make the cattle breed appreciated and well integrated into the French panorama.

Holstein cattle breed in Holland

The coastal region of Friesland, Holland, is home to a breed famous for its milk production: the Holstein cow. The area brings to mind another breed of cattle that is also born here: the Friesian.

Crossing the breed with the Italian Friesian helps breeders to create a perfect breed from a dairy point of view. Piebald coat with a good balance between black and white, robust structure and resistant legs represent the aesthetic characteristics of the animal which is very widespread in the Netherlands.

Belgian Blue cattle breed in Belgium

They call it the breed with double muscles, its scientific name is Belgian blanc bleu and it shows itself with an important build full of muscles. Similar to the Piedmontese, it offers an excellent slaughter yield - close to 70%.

The white coat that appears with blue shades represents the distinctive trait of the bovine breed.

Its birth occurred around the nineteenth century and right from the start, the selection was committed to a good yield at the slaughterhouse.

Heck cattle breed in Germany

The Hecker brothers' objective was to bring the farmed cattle back to their original form in terms of dairy characteristics and yield at the slaughterhouse. Born in Germany around the turn of the 1920s and 1930s, they chose to tour the farms to find a breed as similar as possible to the aurochs - a cattle breed that became extinct in the 17th century.

They achieved their goal only in part: the crossbreeding made it possible to create a more agile breed than the original and with more linear horns than the scenic wave of the aurochs. They also found a sexual disforminism visible in the coat, the male specimen had a black coat, while the female was brown.

To date, there are almost 2 thousand specimens in Europe which hide a marked aggressiveness and unfamiliarity with breeding, however the cuts of meat obtained are very tasty and tasty.

Gelbvieh cattle breed - again - in Germany

They also call it the yellow of Germany, or rather of Franconia since it originates exactly from this region located in the central-southern part of the country.

The red pied is its ancestor and in the family tree there are also traces of the Shorthorn, Simmenthal and South Devon.

In 1879 the breed book was created which defines the standards: dark coat, average height, showy and well-developed muscles and well-structured bone structure.

Today the cattle breed is used for the production of meat, however it hides a good aptitude for the production of milk.

Polish Red cattle breed in Poland

The oldest breed in Poland, used to living in close contact with the mountains. The first appearances took place in the 16th century and until the beginning of the 20th century there were 4 different subspecies, today only one category has survived and it is considered at risk of extinction due to continuous cross-breeding.

The southern region of Malopolska sees an important presence of cattle and remains intact as it offers good milk production and is perfect for dairy production.

Simmenthal cattle breed in Switzerland

The beginning of the cattle breed dates back to the 5th century and today many know it in the form of Simmenthal cans of jellied meat.

Questionable in terms of the taste of processed meat, the bovine breed has common characteristics that immediately recall the figure of a cow in the imagination, just like the one we drew as children.

Spotted white and red coat, white head and short, yellowish horns.

It seems that it comes from Scandinavia and has found fertile ground and an ideal habitat for proliferation in Switzerland. Strong aptitude for milk, it also offers good quality cuts of meat.

Braunvieh cattle breed - still - in Switzerland

Braunvieh is a cattle breed dear to the most nostalgic and in line with tradition. The Einsiedeln monastery saw the birth of the first animals around the beginning of the 1600s and then offered the neighboring nations - Austria and Germany, more precisely Bavaria - several animals to continue the species.

The original Braunvirh was born in Bavaria: brown and uniform coat, suitable for grazing and with a dual attitude. The dairy products are top quality, so much so that they represent part of the economy of the Allgäu region. Even the meat hides different qualities, tender and soft, it lends itself to various Italian and international recipes.

Pinzgauer in Austria

The Pinzgauer was born in Salzburg, a bovine breed with strong resistance characteristics: a rustic version perfect for mountain pastures, it broadly resembles the Japanese Wagyu cows.

Today Pinzgauer has also spread to the area of ​​the Bavarian Alps and South Tyrol due to similar climatic conditions.

Although it is suitable for inaccessible areas, the Austrian breed is at risk of extinction due to its small number of animals and its lack of predisposition for reproduction.

Black and pointed horns and a piebald coat are the aesthetic characteristics of the bovine breed.

End of a journey among the cattle breeds

And here we are at the end of the journey, we have certainly passed many breeds rich in particularities and unique characteristics. Italy is also rich in peculiarities and native breeds that demonstrate excellence in various sectors.

Traveling to Europe allows you to learn more about the meat that is put on the table or the cheese that has particular and unique characteristics.

Goodies and curiosities mix with the birth of some cattle breeds that were selected due to the nostalgic inspiration of some individuals passionate about the sector. Not all meat is the same, and now we can add some more information!