The characteristics of the different “Iberian breeds” are recognised as unique worldwide, due to how they are fed, how they are produced and for their breed.
The different certifications showing the gourmet quality of our meats are mainly:
Galician beef comes from meticulous selection performed at Galician slaughterhouses, checking the traceability of the cow and ensuring it has fed freely on natural pastures, which lends unmistakable characteristics to the beef. For the consumer, it is the guarantee that the meat is of unbeatable quality.
Due to the area and the rainy climate that characterises Galicia, the pastures have a special acidity that make a difference to the flavour of the meat, which is considered one of the best in the world.
The Galician blond is medium-sized and proportionate, with a long, deep, curved thorax; wide, flat, muscular back and sides; and long, low, convex thighs, rump and legs. Its frame is strong, robust and well-developed. All of these conditions coincide with the generally long, deep, full, wide shape of animals especially for meat production. It is fundamentally red-haired or straw or cinnamon coloured (capa teixa), although there may be oscillations from light or yellow to dark or red (the term blond in Galician —rubio— has the same etymon as blush in Spanish —rubor—, indicating a red colour). It has pink mucous membrane and light-coloured horns and hoofs ranging from pinkish-white to light brown and a little darker at the tips. It weighs between 450 kg and 500 kg and its coat is varying shades of straw blond. It always has pink mucous membrane, which is a typical characteristic of this breed of beef cow.
The breeds that come under PGI Ternera de Extremadura include cattle of the indigenous Retinta, Avileña Black-Iberian, Morucha, Berrendas and White Caceres breeds, and cross-breeds of them with Charolais and Limousin bred under the PGI Carne de la Sierra de Guadarrama extensive farming regime.
Meat that is classed PGI Ternera de Extremadura comes from extensive cattle farming, which has been practised for centuries in the Dehesa ecosystem in Extremadura.
There are three different presentations of the product: HEIFER, YEARLING and BULLOCK, depending on the age of the animals, which range from less than one year to three years old. The meat varies in colour, texture and sheen from bright pink to cherry red.
The feed, breed and production system used lend characteristics to the fat with regard to infiltration, colour, consistency, sheen and texture, which provides the organoleptic characteristics that are typical of the product.
Meat from Ávila is perhaps a culinary reference not only for the province of Ávila but for all of Spain. The Avileña breed is a cultural legacy of priceless value. It has an intense red to pink colour and a firm consistency but a fine texture.
Only Avileña Black-Iberian cattle, which are mostly bred in Castile and León and Extremadura, are used to produce this GI and its regulatory council has its headquarters in the city of Ávila.
The Avileña Black-Iberian breed, which is bred in this food production area, is a specimen evolved from the mountain breed and cross-bred with other breeds from the region, resulting in uniformly black animals although there are occasionally flaws in the colour of their hide.