Columbia harbors the second Normande population in the world after France. Normandes were first imported in 1877. Today the Normande is one of the main dairy breeds in Colombia, and the only one that can be found at high altitudes in the Andes thanks to its more robust heart. It’s also the cow of choice for the small farms of one to three cows. Finally, it is used in the lower tropical areas, for milk and beef, and most often crossed with zebus.
After France and Colombia, Uruguay hosts the 3rd largest Normande population in its large pampa. There are both beef and dairy herds of Normandes, with a unique pocket of farmstead cheese operations near the Rio de la Plata, across from Argentina. Uruguay also counts strong and passionate women advocates for the Normande, real “pasionarias”, such as Violeta Parietti, Alba Caorsi, Isabel Chiarino, and others. The Normande would not be where it stands today, in Uruguay and elsewhere, without them. Uruguay is also the only South American country that maintained a tradition of farmstead cheeses made from Normande milk.
There has been Normandes in Brazil for years. Most of them are located in the southern state of Rio Grande do Sul, where gauchos are their keepers. While most Normandes in Brazil are used for beef, there is a growing interest in the dairy qualities of the breed.
Swiss breeders exhibited Normandes at the famous Swiss Expo in Lausanne, some with beautiful horns. Those Swiss, they’ve always loved nice horns! The Normande breed is gaining ground in Switzerland thanks to its superior cheese and dual purpose qualities.
Czech Republic and Netherlands are seeing growing populations of Normandes. Projects include farmstead cheesemaking, A2A2 milk marketing, or crossbreeding in conventional dairies.
Australia: the Normande has had a presence down there for more than 20 years and, lately, embryos have been imported and the Normande base is getting larger in grazing operations.
New Zealand: the Normande is getting a foothold on the islands, thanks to a few enthusiasts. The first calves out of embryos are growing and there are crossbreds as well. And it’s only the beginning.