The French Simmental cattle are a French breed of cattle originated from Simmental cattle breed from Switzerland. It is a dual-purpose breed which is raised for both milk and meat production. The Simmental cattle were imported from Switzerland to France at the beginning of the 20th century. The French Simmental cattle are also known as Eastern red pied (in French, pie rouge de l’est). The stud book for the breed was opened in 1930.
The French authorities tried to cross this breed with Montbeliard during the 1970s, but Montbeliard’s breeders refused. The breed was also crossed with Fleckvieh and Swiss Simmental cattle, and named French Simmental at that time. The French Simmental cattle breed was first bred in Franche-Comté, but now it is found in the Auvergne. Currently there are about 35,000 cows available. Read more information about the breed below.
French Simmental Cattle Characteristics
French Simmental cattle are medium to large animals. They are usually red pied colored with white head and legs and the red is a clear tan. They can be either horned or polled, depending on the genetic breeding history. Generally they have pigment around the eye area, which is good for preventing problems in heavily sunny regions. Udders of the cows is well developed and also remain in good health conditions with few common problems. Mature cows are about 140 cm tall at the withers. And average body height of the mature bulls is around 150 cm. The mature cows on average weight around 700 kg. And average live body weight of the mature bulls is around 1100 kg. Photo and info from Wikipedia.
French Simmental cattle are dual-purpose animals. They are used in both milk and meat production. But they are primarily used for milk production in France. The breed is also used for crossing with beef cattle such as Charolais and Limousin cattle.
The French Simmental cattle are very hardy and strong animals. They are known for their longevity, high and long term fertility. They are also known for their good grazing ability, early maturity and good growth rates. They can adapt themselves easily to the most varied conditions from rural small-holder to large extensive ranching operations. They are relatively docile in temperament and are of good behavior, and they are very easy to handle. But the cows sometimes can be aggressive when protecting their calves. The bulls can be aggressive sometimes.
The French Simmental cattle are an early maturing breed and they can convert food to weight in a very efficient manner regardless of the kind of pasture they are in. They are very good for meat production with a very good ratio between meat and waste products such as fat and bone. Their meat is also well-marbled, giving it good tenderness and adding to it’s marketability. The cows are also very good for milk production and raised mainly as a dairy breed in France. The cows on average produce about 6,400 kg of milk every year. Their milk is of good quality containing about 4 percent of fat and 3.3 percent of proteins. Milk of the French Simmental cows is used for making cheese. However, review full breed profile of the French Simmental cattle breed in the following chart.
French Simmental Cattle | Breed Profile
|Breed Name||French Simmental|
|Other Name||Eastern red pied (in French, pie rouge de l’est)|
|Breed Purpose||Milk and meat|
|Special Notes||Very hardy, active, well adapted to native climates, good milkers, grow relatively faster, good quality meat, longevity, easy calving, docile temperament|
|Breed Size||Medium to large|
|Weight||Bulls||Around 1100 kg|
|Cows||Around 700 kg|
|Climate Tolerance||Native climates|
|Coat Color||Usually red pied with white head and legs|
|Horned||Yes or polled|
|Country/Place of Origin||France|