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TT3 Beef Cattle Farm

vâche limousine
© Florence Carreras, INRA

Destination: the Domain des Rues and the experimental farm Thorigné d'Anjou

Schedule: 7:40 - 19:00, Friday August 30 2013

Distance: 220 km round trip from Nantes


The domain « des Rues »

The Domain « des Rues » is a model farm built in the XIXth century by the Rougé family in order to promote the agricultural development of its territory. It is a remarkable monument where each building is dedicated to a specific species.

The Rougé family and other rural nobles of the period were really keen on agriculture. Beginning in 1836 they imported English bulls belonging to the Durham breed to cross them with the local Mancelle breed. This crossbreeding led to the breed that today is called the Rouge des Prés. The status and standards of this breed were deposited at the Agriculture Ministry in 1908 by Olivier de Rougé.

After having been considered as a mixed breed for a long time, it finally became a specialised beef breed during the 1980s. In 2004 it received a registered designation of origin (  AOC for Appelation d’Origine Controlée in French) then a Protected designation of Origin (AOP for Appelation d’Origine Protégée in French) in 2010 under the name of AOP Maine Anjou. In 2009, the breeders bought the Domain des Rues, the place of origin of the breed, in order to implant their administrative structures and their selection farm and to develop an agrotouristic project to promote the breed and its products. 

A half-a-day will be spent discovering this site during the beef breed technical tour organised for the EAAP 2013 congress. The visit will be composed of the following :

  • A visit of the property and how it fits-in in the breed – product project (approximately 45 min)
  • Presentation of the strategy of the breed around the AOP project (approximately 45 min)
  • Sensorial analysis session (45 min)
  • Lunch on the site

The experimental farm Thorigné d’Anjou

The experimental farm Thorigné d’Anjou is a farm of polyculture – breeding with 125 ha SAU (agriculture area in use) and a herd of 68 beef cows of the Limousin breed. The breed is managed organically. The farm is managed with the objective of attaining total food autonomy for the herd, with the highest standards in terms of zootechnical performances and the finished quality of the animals. A half-day will be spent with this in mind.

After a presentation of the experimental farm and its main research subjects, the following will be discussed:

  • Optimising production of organic beef meat (female finishing, valorisation of males)
  • Research around autonomy and food security (prairies with different types of flora, alfalfa, cereal/protein plant associations, protein plants)
  • Respect of the environment (impact on water and air, carbon and nitrogen)

A presentation in a conference room is scheduled along with a visit of the farm.

The number of participants is limited: first registered, first served. Registration will be stopped once the maximum capacity is reached.

In case of an insufficient number of participants, the tour will be cancelled