In the stock farms Daskalos family, we breed hundreds of male calves, born by free-range cows which live for about six months per year in the mountainous areas of Northern Pindos. After their weaning, the calves follow a fattening diet with feed of purely plant origin.
The genetic improvement of animals constitutes a factor of utmost importance for Greek animal farming. Considering the needs of the modern meat market, this can be achieved in the Daskalos family farm with the crossbreeding of animals of different breeds. In that way, the animal’s growth performance, its ability to make better use of the feed it consumes, its morphology and its general ability for fattening are improved.
In the Daskalos livestock breeding unit, aiming at the optimization of meat production characteristics of the animals, we choose to crossbreed animals of the Limousin and the Belgian Blue breed.
The Belgian Blue Breed comes from Belgium and is also known in France as Race de la Moyenne et Haute Belgique. The big, muscular appearance of the animals is a characteristic they share with the animals of the Piedmontese breed. Their name comes from the typical blue-grey colour of their fur, although it can vary from white to black.
The Belgian Blue breed has a natural genetic mutation of myostatin, a protein that offsets the muscle development. If myostatin is reduced, it cannot function effectively, resulting in accelerated muscle growth, which is originally caused by hyperplasia and not hypertrophy. Moreover, this mutation impacts on the fat distribution process, resulting in the production of very lean meat.
The crossbred calves of Daskalos family combine the ideal meat production characteristics of both Limousin and Belgian Blue calves. So, they are the most marketable calves, capable of giving excellent quality meat to the final consumer.