Beef breeds
Blonde d’Aquitaine

Couple vache- veau Blonde d'Aquitaine
Couple vache- veau Blonde d’Aquitaine - Crédit : France Blonde d’Aquitaine Sélection
Summary of the article

 Traits and performances

The Blonde d’Aquitaine was created in 1962 by combining the three branches of south-western French Blonde line-breeds, and its numbers have since spiraled: in the space of just 30 years, it has progressed from regional breed to national breed and is now fast becoming an international breed.

The popularity of the Blonde d’Aquitaine stems from a combination of attractive factors: a large frame yet very docile breed that calves easily by birthing slender fine-boned calves.

The animals consistently demonstrate top-notch conformation and outstanding growth, but the primary advantage that really sets the Blonde d’Aquitaine apart is its remarkably high percentage yield of high-value carcass.

Experience has shown that the fine bone structure and low percentage of body fat mean higher cutability, especially of high-value cuts (hindquarters) which average out at 5% higher yields than the best-of-the-rest specialized beef breeds.

The Label Rouge "Bœuf Blonde d’Aquitaine" was created in 1992 to promote sales of lean and tasty Blonde meat.

Beyond these qualities, the Blonde d’Aquitaine also offers a strong ability to withstand hot climates and drought conditions, which have sealed its popularity in countries like Mexico, Peru, and Columbia, where it is widely crossed with zebu.

Blonde blood brings earlier growth, better conformation and improved carcass yields to native local breeds.


The best Blonde d’Aquitaine young bulls are evaluated in the national individual on-station testing in Casteljaloux, as part of the genetic improvement program led in tandem by France Blonde d’Aquitaine Sélection, Blonde Génétique and the Breeding Company Midatest.

The breeding objectives are revised every ten years to realign them with farmers’ needs and expectations. The Blonde d’Aquitaine breeding program is currently working on cross consolidating the different productive objectives (purebred or crossbred) while preserving the breed’s excellent traits.

The priority objectives are therefore to increase beef yields (muscle development) and improve suckling ability while conserving the breed’s frame, growth rate and ease of calving.

The quality of the bulls propagated by artificial insemination – for their beefing abilities program o their maternal qualities – together with the broad range of qualified bulls for natural mating are driving the improvement campaign forward.


Key figures

  • 514,416 cows
  • 18,424 farms
  • 154,943 cows under on-farm official performance recording system
  • 37,426 cows recorded in the Herd Book
  • 197,641 artificial inseminations
  • Height at withers (adult cow): 145 to 160 cm
  • Adult cow weight:
    850 to 1350 kg
  • Adult bull weight:
    1,100 to 1,700 kg
  • Easy calving: 94 %
  • Birth weight of male calves: 47.6 kg
  • 120-day weight of male calves: 179 kg
  • 210-day weight of male calves: 299 kg
  • Weight of young-bull carcass:
    400 to 460 kg
  • Carcass yield: 61 to 63 %

Results of on-farm performance recording system 2014 - Institut de l’Elevage & France Bovins Croissance