Farm Ireland

Saturday 17 March 2018

The Viking roots, Irish breeding and Canadian bloodlines of this beef breed

Martin Ryan

The primary objective of the Irish Angus Cattle Society when it was established in 1967, was the development and improvement of the breed in Ireland.

In the intervening years it has faced stiff challenge from the imported continental beef breeds.

The Society introduced AI to the breed and acquired Canadian bloodlines which radically improved the conformation of the Angus breed.

It was also the first Breed Society in Ireland to introduce a breed-specific beef scheme when it launched the Certified Irish Angus Beef Scheme.

The Angus breed originated in Scotland from the small, dun-coloured hornless cattle brought there in the time of the Vikings/Norsemen.

These cattle bred with the native black hornless cattle in the area, and a naturally polled black breed was produced which became recognised as the Aberdeen Angus, although these original cattle were considerably smaller than the animal we know today.

Prior to 1967, Irish bred Angus animals were registered as Aberdeen Angus in the Scottish Herd Book.

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