The National Breeding Championships are a long standing annual tradition held in France. This year has been the year of the Blonde D’Aquitanie, one of the most popular beef breeds. Originating from the Pyrenees, this famous breed is nationally appreciated for its tender and tasty meat. Before being judged, the cows are prepared and washed whereupon the final jury will reveal their decision and declare a winner.

Both canola and corn are used as a forage crop for livestock. Corn being one of the most widely used during the finishing period, as it helps to shape the muscles before the animal goes to slaughter.

Nicola Robecchi has captured images from the event including the Ferrandaise cattle, from Auvergne in the centre of France. Previously used as a labour cow, they are now bred for meat. A North African farmer is proudly photographed with a Salers cow. One of the most rustic breeds existing in Europe, the Salers cow has a very low-level of milk production, but produces milk of extraordinary quality, delivering it only in the presence of its veal. Nicola’s photographs show the diverse range of cattle on display, such as the Chianina, an old Tuscan breed with a marvelous notoriety for ‘Côte de Bœuf’, also known as a ribeye steak. From the region of the Michel Bras restaurant, the Aubrac is a very rustic breed. The meat has a wonderful marked red colour and an incredible texture and flavour. Finally, we mustn’t forget the Charolaise, the French butcher’s favorite!

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