Bresse Chickens

nicko

Founder of Cheftalk.com
Staff member
4,346
361
Joined Oct 5, 2001
Does anyone know if it is at all possible to get Bress chickens (the chicken with the blue feet) found in Bourg en Bresse, France? If that is not possible does anyone know of any farmers who are raising chickens in a similar fashion?

------------------
Thanks,

Nicko
[email protected]
 

isa

3,236
11
Joined Apr 4, 2000
Nicko,


Here is some information about poulet de Bresse.

The poulet de Bresse is the best chicken one can find. To be given the mark (appelation) poulet de Bresse, the chicken has to belong to the Bressane race. The main characteristics of this race are as follow: red cockscomb for the male, white feathers and blue feet.

The raising of the chicken is strictly regulated. At 35 days the chicken is released in a pasture where he is allowed a minimum space of 10 square metres. The chicken will remain in this pasture for nine weeks. He is then put into a cage for eight to 15 days. This will help the development of its characteristic white flesh. The chicken is slaughter at 16 weeks.

The feeding of the chicken is what gives it its main characteristic. cereal flour, corn, dairy products with, among other things, worms, mollusc and the insects the chicken finds on the ground.


All Bresse chicken have a tricolour tag on their leg.


Hope this will be helpful


Sisi
 
7,375
69
Joined Aug 11, 2000
I went to an Organic Farmers Conf. last Feb and they were discusing pastured poultry. Breese came up in the conversation. what I would tell you Nicko is talk to your Dept of Ag in Ill. I have contacts in Springfield (I spoke at the speciality farmers conf 2000)if you need them and find poultry farmers willing to experiment for you...do a special grow.....get specifics and see what the farmers can do for you.
 

nicko

Founder of Cheftalk.com
Staff member
4,346
361
Joined Oct 5, 2001
Thanks Sisi and Shroomgirl. I worked in Bourg en Bresse France, for awhile and so I was wondering if a chicken of similar quality was available. Shroom I did talk with a good friend of mine who had also worked in Bourg en Bresse and he was working with a local Illinois farmer to see if they could raise some chickens with similar characteristics. It wasn't easy as I remember, and I don't think it ever came to fruition.

------------------
Thanks,

Nicko
[email protected]
 
7,375
69
Joined Aug 11, 2000
HMMMMM if this was not in the last year or so...you may want to try again, I could swear that there's been talk of bresse in USA
 
1
10
Joined Oct 15, 2010
I pasture raise a breed of poultry from France called Freedom Rangers. In France this is the breed that is sold for their Label Rouge. These birds I raise are beyond Organic.

I am located in Peotone IL.
 
6,367
128
Joined Feb 1, 2007
......and a whole lot has changed in the culinary world along the way.

One of the positive changes is the greater availability of heritage livestock breeds. People are raising all sorts of old-time breeds, in poultry, hogs, and even cows.

I'd say interest in heritage livestock right now is about where heirloom vegetables were in the early to mid-90s; that is, it's sort of an agricultural subculture with ever growing numbers of participants. If it follows the same progression, we're sure to see many of those varieties mainstreamed in the near future. Meanwhile, if you search around, you can find them.

Shromgirl, I know, has been very active on the hog end, and can probably make references. Poultry probably is even bigger, in terms of breeders, because there were so many more varieties, and they require less room.

All in all, it's a great time for real food.
 
1,468
30
Joined Nov 6, 2004
   Hi grassfarmer42...welcome /img/vbsmilies/smilies//smile.gif

  Have you got a website that you can either post here or pm me?

  thanks,

  dan
 
9
10
Joined Oct 3, 2011
Thanks very much.  It's funny that this thread was started a decade ago and now we actually have some chickens to talk about!

We're hatching our first white American Bresse this week; the first ever hatched in America to the best of my knowledge.  We will be building them a rolling coop to put out on pasture in a couple of months.

The American Bresse are beautiful birds with muscular bodies and balanced proportions.  What I hadn't read but have now experienced is that they also have excellent personalities.  They're confident and inquisitive, and even the hens  --commonly flighty in other breeds-- are calm and enjoy people. 
 
1
10
Joined Oct 10, 2011
D'Artagnan Farms-- It's a domestically bred blue footed chicken that's the closest you can get to in the U.S.  Apparently the French are very proprietary and have not let any Bresse chicken eggs get smuggled out of the country!  Warning:  they are very expensive and come with the feet on which you have to figure out how to lop off.
 
9
10
Joined Oct 3, 2011
Until recently it is true that the only birds available in the US were the blue-footed chicken; a Bresse facsimile bred to look like a Bresse but genetically not an authentic Bresse.  This changed in 2011.  There are now authentic Bresse in the United States.

While it is true the French government banned the export of live Bresse, other European countries did not.  And, over time, small flocks of authentic Bresse were established in a few of those other European countries.  Greenfire Farms legally imported chickens from these other European countries.  In 2011, our imported Bresse were approved with a USDA import permit and quarantined for 30 days in the USDA quarantine facility in New York.  We call the birds we raise American Bresse to distinguish them from birds hatched in France.  But, the parent stock of our birds traces its lineage directly to the Bresse of France.
 
5,708
571
Joined Sep 5, 2008
While it is true the French government banned the export of live Bresse, other European countries did not.  And, over time, small flocks of authentic Bresse were established in a few of those other European countries.  Greenfire Farms legally imported chickens from these other European countries.
So if the French government banned the export of live Bresse, those other European countries got their Bresse chickens... illegally? Then Greenfire Farms legally imported illegal chickens? /img/vbsmilies/smilies/eek.gif
 
9
10
Joined Oct 3, 2011
For years Bresse have been in a number of European countries other than France.  For example, here's an article that addresses Bresse being raised in the Netherlands:

http://www.aviculture-europe.nl/nummers/07E02A04.pdf

It is not illegal to import into the United States chickens from these other countries, nor are the Bresse that are currently alive in those countries "illegal" chickens.  Our importation of Bresse was perfectly legal, and hopefully over time it will grow to benefit Americans who treasure the taste of world-class food . 
 

Latest posts

Top Bottom