For some years, we have been working with Alexander Agethle from the Käserei Englhorn organic cheese dairy in Val Venosta. Every year, at the end of summer, we bring the cattle down from the Alpine pastures to Bassa Atesina, to the vineyards, where they are still able to find food for the winter because of the milder climate. This means we are able to keep the animals outdoors all year round, which is unique for an alpine region such as Alto Adige, and to let them live in a species-appropriete manner. We offer organic meat from these cattle, which graze all year, in our restaurant PARADEIS for consumption and purchase.
For us, this collaboration is the start of responsible, regional meat consumption. The intention is that space can once again be made for native cattle, and they will be valued in a region where they have largely been supplanted in importance by the dairy cow. The male cattle, which are usually of no “use” to a cheese dairy, will not be sent to foreign fattening farms to become part of mass meat production. Instead they will create greater diversity and productivity in the vineyard and help us to get closer to the closed-loop ideal. As the cattle live in the vineyards in autumn and winter, we can also extend the grazing season and counteract the problem of feed scarcity.
Together with cheese maker Alexander Agethle, we are reviving the old tradition of transhumance with the TAURUS project.