Veal from the Catalan Pyrenees PGI

PGI Veal of the Catalan Pyrenees

Under this protected geographical indication are registered a set of cattle herd farms, among which the Pyrenean brown breed is prodded, based on extensive and semiextensive forms of exploitation.

Meat and sausages

The PGI Veal of the Catalan Pyrenees covers beef produced extensively or semi-extensively in the Pyrenees, following pre-established breeding criteria and from the following rustic breeds: Bruna from the Pyrenees (autochthonous Catalan), Aubrac or Gasconne, or from the crossing of mothers of these breeds with males of the Charolaise, Limousine or Blonde d'Aquitaine breeds. The result is a tasty, tender flesh with a characteristic color ranging from pink to intense reddish. The birth of calves takes place outdoors, in the pasture meadows of the mothers. The first four months of life correspond to the lactation stage, during which breastfeeding should always be natural. Once the calf is weaned, the growth and fattening phase begins. The diet at this stage consists of dried fodder and a balanced mix of crushed cereals and legumes. Animals are slaughtered between 8 and 12 months of age.



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Complementary information

Bovine production in the Pyrenees has been one of the bases of Catalan livestock. The economic systems of this area have been based for many centuries on the complementarity between livestock and agriculture through the selective use of spaces. The economic transformations of the first half of the twentieth century, stimulated by the installation of hydroelectric companies and the industrialization processes generated in some regions, promoted the orientation of Pyrenean livestock towards beef. The result was an increase in livestock specialisation by reducing less productive crops (cereals, vineyards) and introducing new bovine breeds that are more suitable for milk or meat production than for field work, which would be incorporated into a livestock farming model. Within this framework, an extensive and semiextensive production aimed at obtaining quality meat was generalized, which culminated in the differentiation of this under the Protected Geographical Indication Beef of the Catalan Pyrenees. It is a cross-border PGI since its production area covers northern Catalonia (France).

Attributes and nutritional properties

Once the beef has been slaughtered, a classification of the carcasses is made, which must have a minimum weight of 160 kg. The gastronomic uses of this product correspond to those usually used with beef: grilled preparations, stews, etc. It should be noted that it is a product that attracts a consumer who knows the differentiated properties of this meat compared to other productions, derived from its extensive handling and its great demand in terms of health control.