he Normande in France
There are almost 2 million head, 600,000 of which are cows, mostly spread through the western part of the country. In 2000 alone, 500,000 First Artificial Inseminations (IAP) were recorded, and 300,000 cows were registered at the milk control council.In the 1930s, there were an estimated 4 million Normande cows. Several factors caused a continual drop in those numbers: competition from the Holstein, the disappearance of small herds due to the implementation of quotas, and an increase in milk productivity. The number of IAPs went from 670,000 in 1989 to 490,000 in 1999. Since 1997, the number seems more or less stable. On the contrary, there seems to be a renewed interest in the breed, thanks to its newly re-established competitivity in today’s environment but also to the great added value it contributes to Normandy's name-controlled produce!
The Normande around the world
The Normande is present in many countries and especially in South America, where it was exported at the start of the 20th century. Its hardiness, ease of calving and management, and ability to convert coarse fodder in an economical way enable it to adapt to all climates at all altitudes. Colombia: 1.2 million head of thoroughbreds or Normande x Zebu crosses Uruguay: 300,000 head of thoroughbreds and crosses. Other countries (more than 15 of them): 100,000 head of thoroughbreds and crosses: Argentina, UK, USA, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, Portugal… Main development centres: Ireland, USA, Australia, Chile, Mexico
Colombia is the Normande's second home. Imported over 100 years ago, the breed has adapted very well to the steep slopes and varying climate of the country. The Colombian association of Normande breeders (ASONORMANDO Colombiano) ensures genealogical monitoring of the animals and gives advice to breeders. It also acts as a relay in the commercialisation of French bull semen. Chile is also an area of great potential for the breed, which is already well established in certain areas (Curacautin) and will eventually become a shop window for French breeding through a big pilot farm whose herd is going through a “Normandizing” process. (cf bulletin N°88, Feb 2001). The United States holds strong development potential for the breed, which is stirring up interest in more and more breeders wishing for easier herd management (fertility, calving ease), increased milk protein value (TP) and exceptional qualities for cheese making, as well as added value for their pastures.