Braunvieh are dual-purpose cattle, first imported to South Africa in 1907 as part of a cross-breeding programme initiated by the Department of Agriculture to improve the indigenous breeds and produce cattle suited for the cold highlands in South Africa.
In those years, the breed, thanks to its exceptional qualities, distinguished itself by resulting in a marked improvement of all the breeds with which it was crossed, resulting in accelerated growth, good muscling and excellent conformity in offspring.
Eighteen years later, the South African Braunvieh Cattle Breeders’ Society, Braunvieh SA for short, was founded to protect and promote the interests of Braunvieh producers in the country.
Since then the Braunvieh has become the breed that, over a thirty-year period, has won South-Africa phase C performance testing the most times – a standardised test where bulls from different breeds are evaluated and subjected to various body measurements under the same conditions over a predetermined period, to determine factors such as their average daily gain and feed conversion ratio.
Bulls that do not meet the minimum performance standards in phase C performance testing are castrated and Braunvieh SA only allows top bulls with above average scores to be branded with their mark and be registered with SA Studbook.
Braunvieh cattle have also established themselves as a breed with high best linear unbiased prediction values, which means that the performance of an animal’s offspring can be predicted.