Wagyu around the World - Europe

GIF file for Hirashiget WG045 promoting semen from Wagyu-Gentics on Wagyu International

Belgium: In 1998 Wagyu cattle were introduced in Europe to Château Altembrouck in Belgium. Wagyu and Magalitza hogs were raised on its grounds and produce was sold to resident diners and exported. 15 years later this herd was acquired together with others from the Netherlands by telecommunication giant Readen Holding Corp.
Map of Europe showing countries United Kingdom: After a career in banking and trading, David Wynne Finch was supplying imported Wagyu beef to discerning restaurants in the United Kingdom in 2003. The demand led him to import embryos from USA to be raised for breeding on 800 acres of the Voelas Estate in north western Wales. This herd was sold to Andrew Deacon in Suffolk, who also bought the small Wagyu herd that had been pioneered by Jonathan Denby from pure Wagyu embryos imported from Holland. The Wagyu Breeders Association is the UK based association that was established in July 2014. Mike Tucker is Director and Chairman. Members from the association attended the inaugural World Wagyu Congress in Australia in May 2015.
Ireland: Oliver O'Hanlon of "Wagyu Ireland" established a herd herd in Killcullen in Ireland which was started with fullblood Wagyu embryos from Australia in 2008. He has been selling semen, embryos, breeding stock and highly marbled beef from Ireland
Germany: Some farmers had independently imported Wagyu embryos over a few years from 2004 and established their own herds. It was in the autumn of 2007 that two Angus breeders - Klaus Möbius and Benjamin Junck - discussed forming a Wagyu association to promote the Wagyu breed in Germany. After preliminary discussions, a meeting was held amongst other breeders in Mittelbach in Saxony on 27th June 2008. Nine founding members selected the Board of Directors and the Advisory Board. The application was formalised in November at the animal production fair “EuroTier” at Hanover. The registration of the association was approved early in 2009 and breeding objectives were determined and promotion of the breed commenced. Ties were established with the Wagyu associations in Australia, USA and Canada. Chair of the Wagyu Association Germany is Klaus Möbius of Midland Wagyu Farm. This is an arable farm in Mittelbach in Saxonia which breeds Wagyu (since 2005) and Angus. Vice-Chair is Dr Benjamin Junck of Vornagel Genetics in Jungingen in Baden-Württemberg. He has a registered Angus herd and is building up a Wagyu fullblood herd. Treasurer is Hans-Jürgen Kühl, breeding manager on a fullblood Wagyu and Holstein farm at Bordesholm in Schleswig-Holstein. The Advisory Board comprises Steffen Schäfer of Der Vogelsberger in Romrod-Zell, Ronald Haake from Havelberg in Sachsen-Anhalt and Ludwig Maurer of Schergengruber Wagyu in Rattenberg in Bavaria. A delegation of members from Germany attended the inaugural World Wagyu Congress in Queensland in May 2015. A very successful sale was held by the association in September 2015 and the second European Wagyu Gala is scheduled on 9 - 10th Septmebr, 2016 at Münster. The German Wagyu Association with 85 members is the largest Wagyu Association in Europe.
France: After tasting Kobe beef in 2002, Johan Hemelaere planned to introduce Wagyu into France. He imported 100 Wagyu embryos from Westholme in Australia in 2005. They were implanted in recipient Holstein cows in Belgian. USA semen was used on the progeny two years later on Domaine de Tilleul in the Aisne in northern France. Embryos were flushed in the French herd from May 2009 by Gérard Bernard from Gènes Diffusion while Johan bred his own Wagyu genetics. A field day was hosted by Johan in September 2013 for fifteen Wagyu breeders. Gérard Bernard also attended. A code needs to be created for Wagyu to enable an association to be registered through the Institute of Livestock at the Ministry of Agriculture.
Wagyu breeding was pioneered in the Netherlands by Rob Baarsma in the Netherlands. He had been farming on De Drie Morgen with Caroline Zeevenhooven since 2003. Embryos were imported from Australia and implanted in Dutch surrogate cows. The first two groups of calves were born in November 2005 and January 2006. The bloodlines were pure Wagyu and diversity was maintained with genetics from Takeda Farms. This herd contributed to the establishment of many herds across Europe. It was purchased in September 2013 by telecommunications company Readen Holding Corp. Readen, with operations in Turkey and Asia, had acquired Altembrouck in Belgium then Petrus Wagyu to establish Altembrouck Agri bvba. Chateaux Wagyu logo
Spain: Patxi Garmendia introduced Wagyu to Spain. Born and raised on a farm in Bergara in Gipuzkoa, he set a goal in 2005 to produce the best beef. He discovered Wagyu beef in Argentina and then sourced semen from Australia to start his herd. The Wagyu association in Spain is called Asociación Nacional de Criadores de Ganado Selecto de raza Wagyu. Carlos Moreno Jiménez is President. Steve Bennett of Wagyu International represented the Spanish Association at the inaugural World Wagyu Congress in May 2015 and on the first Technical Committee of the World Wagyu Congress.
Austria: The Austrian Wagyu Association is based in Oetz in the Ötz Valley. 13 farmers attended the first Austrian breeders meeting that was held by the association in August 2012. The concept of Wagyu and the objects of association were discussed during the five hour presentation. Speakers were Andreas and Benediktor Scheiring and Peter Beiler. Since then a number of meetings have been held. The on-line herd book was completed in December 2012 and first registrations were due from January 2013. The association statutes were released in January 2013.
Czech Republic: The Czech Beef Breeders Association (Český svaz chovatelů masného skotu or "ČSCHMS") is the organisation authorised by the Ministry of Agriculture of the Czech Republic to co-ordinate and organise a selection program for all beef breeds reared in the Czech Republic. Since it was established in 1990, the ČSCHMS' main objectives are performance recording, evaluation of animals, selection of young bulls for breeding at performance test stations, estimation of breeding values (with assistance of Agricultural Research Institute in Prague), the keeping of a Herd-Book for all beef breeds and the promotion of beef cattle - shows, seminars for all of the breeds. The ČSCHMS operates all over the Czech Republic. Within the ČSCHMS, breeders' clubs for particular breeds have been established. These breeders' clubs are independent in coordinating the breeding aims and tools of a particular breed - they assign the selection programme, standard of breeds and all other matters regarding their breed. Interested Wagyu breeders met for the first time on 24th January 2013 at Střítež u Jihlavy. Petr Krontorád of Bovet was elected inaugral President and he represents the breed on the ČSCHMS committee. The other members of the Wagyu council are Tampierová Martina (Čapí hnízdo, Agrofert), Strejc Miloslav (Ekofarma Rumburk), Bernas Mirko (MBH) and Müller Josef (ERC Pardubice).
Italy: Stephen Bortelli introduced Wagyu to the Ca'Negra Estate using embryos imported from Australia. Presently the fourth generation is running 1,100 Wagyu.
Hungary: Mihály Zichy started breeding Wagyu in 2009 after importing 50 Australian Wagyu embryos to the farm "Zichy Wagyu" in Ófalu, South Hungary.
Denmark: Jørn Steenstrup is a Wagyu breeder in Oppesundby in Denmark.

Beef production is exported to increase modestly through 2015 but profitability will continue to be tight. Increases are expected in Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and France. Production in Ireland is exported to decline 7%. Alternate markets to Russia need to be secured. Consumption is stagnating and, with uncertainty in the dairy industry, there could be pressure on beef supplies if slaughters increase from dairy.

Each country is described in more detail in Global.

Semen and embryos available within Europe are tabled below:

Goorambat DoubleSixty K473 Black Goorambat Wagyu
Goorambat Mr Marble K483 Black Goorambat Wagyu
Goorambat Terutani F145 Black Goorambat Wagyu
GWG 1010 Kinuyasudoi Black German Wagyu Academy
GWG 1027 Hikoshigefuji Black German Wagyu Academy
GWG 1108 Itoshigenami Black German Wagyu Academy
Hirashiget WG045 Black Wagyu-Genetics
IWG Itomoritayasu 107 Black Idaho Wagyu Genetics
IWG Judo 79Z Red Idaho Wagyu Genetics
IWG Kimifuku 117 Black Idaho Wagyu Genetics
IWG Rueshaw 74Z Red Idaho Wagyu Genetics
IWG Umemaru 69Z Red Idaho Wagyu Genetics
Kalanga Red Star C402 Red Bald Ridge Wagyu
Lake Wagyu C87 (+ sexed) Black Lake Wagyu
Ohanasaki Brilliant Black Wagyu Ireland
Sumo Michifuku K430 Black Goorambat Wagyu
Trent Bridge F115 Black Wagyu International
Echigo Farms Maifuku ♂
Goorambat H284 ♀
Black Goorambat Wagyu
Irish Kobe Fuji ♂
Ohanasaki Breda ♀
Black Wagyu Ireland
Goorambat DoubleSixty K473 ♂
Goorambat K552
Black Goorambat Wagyu
IWG Itomoritayasu 107 ♂
IWG Ms Kimifuku 022X ♀
Black Idaho Wagyu Genetics
IWG Itomoritayasu 107 ♂
Ms CHR Kitaguni 245T♀
Black Idaho Wagyu Genetics
IWG Kimifuku 117 ♂
IWG Ms Itoshigenami 023X ♀
Black Idaho Wagyu Genetics
IWG Rueshaw ♂
Coates Tsuki ♀
Red Idaho Wagyu Genetics
IWG Umemaru ♂
Coates Taiyo ♀
Red Idaho Wagyu Genetics
Lake Wagyu C87 ♂
Lake Wagyu E008 ♀
Black Lake Wagyu
Lake Wagyu C87 ♂
Moyhu H130 ♀
Black Lake Wagyu
SPL Yojimbo Mr Shou 05 ♂
Ohanasaki Breda ♀
Black Wagyu Ireland
SPL Yojimbo Mr Shou 05 ♂
Ohanasaki Harriet ♀
Black Wagyu Ireland