A construction over time
The Vialars Farm is what it is today thanks to the hard work of the Valette family. Located on 180ha, the farm has a 300-head herd that is distributed among three barns dedicated to the suckling herd and the finishing house. All of them are pure Aubrac cattle breed that make our family proud. But the farm is the result of a long period of work. At the beginning of the 1900s, when the farm started, there were only a 30 head suckling herds and one barn where the animals could survive the severe winter in the Aveyron region. Every summer, Jean Valette, Christian’s grandfather, had to rent pasture parcels on the Aubrac plateau so that cows could graze fresh grass. In the 1970s, the Valette family got the opportunity to acquire 40 more land hectares and then could double their livestock.
Some years after, in the same vein, the family farm doubled in size thanks to Pierre Valette, Christian’s father. Finally, the farm was transformed by Christian Valette in 2010. Comfort and good feed of the herd have always been a priority but Christian wanted to go a step further in revolutionizing the farm operation. It doesn’t matter what to install inside every barn, the objective was to maximize the animal welfare. With the installation of photovoltaic panels on the rooftop of the barns, the Vialars Farm now is completely modern, ecological and at the forefront of animal welfare. It was in 2010 that he decided to enroll in the Bleu-Blanc-Coeur program, recognized by the French State under the National Health and Nutrition program.
A modern farm… with strong values.
Even if the Vialars Farm has undergone major transformations for more than a century, our values as farmers remain the same. All the investments and developments contribute to the same objective: the welfare of our cows and the preservation of our environment. The privileged relationship with our animals is one of our greatest assets and our spearhead. Guided by the same spirit for more than ten years, Christian Valette has partnered with Frank Canal, “the man who whispers in the ear of animals”. Franck, originally from the Pyrenees Mountain, has moved to the Aveyron region with one idea in mind: raise exceptional livestock.
He is the master in his field, one who can pet any cow, calf or bull. The one who nourishes daily an extraordinary relationship with each animal. Thanks to his work, the cows feel confident, living without stress. Today, the vision of Christian Valette and the skills of Franck offer a high quality of life to their cattle.
The Vialars Farm, Modernity rhymes with Tradition. Although the farm is one of the most modern in France, the tradition of breeding that is specific to the Aubrac plateau has continued for four generations. Franck and Christian lead their livestock by hand. Franck is a strong advocate of the Souvignet method which comes from the Cantal region and is not only about stroking the animals but it is also about keeping the hand on them to earn their confidence. It is a work of passion and patience. Passion because you have to care about animals, spend time with them, and listen to them. As well as patience, which is about proceeding gradually and banning brutality. It is all about a gentle method. To use this method, you must love animals and love the job. For us, stroking our cows and touching them daily are two essential things in life. We cannot think of our job without this closeness. The docility of our cows is a priority. For four generations, we have enjoyed working with animals that respect us and that we respect.
At the same time, our efforts have been focused on more healthier and balanced animal feed. For part of the year, our cows enjoy the natural pastures in the mountains. On the Aubrac plateau, the exceptional flora offers a fresh grass of varied species with more than 300 types of plants, the result of the fertile volcanic soil spared by agricultural crops.
Christian Valette and the cow "Castagne" with her calf, receiving an award in Paris.
Christian Valette in a cantonal contest of the Aubrac breed.
César and Paul Valette, sons of Christian.
Odette, Jean Valette and their sons.