Antiche Razze: Red Cows

The indissoluble link between animal, farmer, product and territory

The Red Reggiana, an indigenous breed hailing from Northern Italy, traces its origins to the 6th century AD, introduced by early barbarian settlers. Its milk played a pivotal role in the inception of Parmigiano Reggiano, within the ancient Benedictine abbey over eight centuries ago. These red cows rightfully earn the title of Parmigiano Reggiano's progenitors.

Characterized by intelligence, placidity, and remarkable longevity, these animals yield less milk compared to the Frisian breed but prove more fruitful in cheese production. The Red Cows' milk boasts a variant of Casein, a critical protein in cheese-making, lending itself to extended aging and enhanced digestibility in the final product.

Parmigiano Reggiano crafted from Red Reggiana Cow's milk shines through its predisposition to prolonged maturation, a wealth of flavors and aromas, and superior digestibility. A notable exemplar is Parmigiano Reggiano Vacche Rosse by our partner, Grana D'Oro, bestowed with three SuperGold awards at the World Cheese Awards.

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The history of Grana D'Oro runs deep, emblematic of the crucial role breeders play in preserving and promoting ancient breeds. This agricultural enterprise has roots dating back generations. Traditionally, November 11th, the feast of Saint Martin, marked the time for changing residences. It was precisely on November 11, 1936, that the Catellani brothers, Domenico, Carlo, and Giulio, along with their entire family, relocated to a farm in Cavriago, in the province of Reggio Emilia. There, they dedicated themselves to raising around ten Red Reggiana cows, a commitment they upheld even as the more productive but foreign Frisian breed gained popularity in the 1960s. Undeterred, the Catellani brothers persisted. In the 1980s, when the Red Reggiana breed faced extinction, they resumed Parmigiano Reggiano production using Red Cow's milk. Today, Grana D'Oro stands as a prominent advocate and guardian of this precious breed, distributing Parmigiano Reggiano Vacche Rosse globally, including in the United States, Japan, Australia, Canada, and Europe.

We invite you to explore these extraordinary creations and partake in the virtuous mission of preserving and disseminating the invaluable heritage of Antiche Razze.