There are three cattle breeds commonly raised in New Zealand: Angus, Hereford & Shorthorn (aka Durham).
All beef sold through NewZealMeats.com is from either the Angus or Hereford breeds.
Angus cattle are a Scottish breed originally developed by cross-breeding the native cattle of the neighboring counties of Angus and Aberdeenshire. They are small, stocky, black and polled (hornless). They were created as a beef breed, and are prized for their superior marbling, and tendency to mature early. Cattle farmers also appreciate that they calve (give birth) more easily and are known for keeping a close watch on their young out in the pasture.
Angus cattle first arrived in New Zealand in 1863. Starting in the 1960s New Zealand Angus cattle were bred to be taller, longer and larger than the original Scottish variety. They are now the most popular cattle breed in New Zealand.
Hereford cattle are a British breed originally developed in Herefordshire by breeding black native English cattle with Dutch white-faced, red cattle. Like Angus, their beef is considered superior to many other breeds. Cattle farmers also appreciate their mellow disposition, hardy constitution, and large frame with big bones (which can support a lot of muscle).
A polled (hornless) variety was bred in the US in the 1900s.
Hereford cattle first arrived in New Zealand in 1868. Polled Hereford cattle were imported from the US in 1929. Herefords (9% of NZ cattle in 2009) and Hereford-Angus crosses (a further 9% in 2009) are the second most popular beef cattle breed in New Zealand (after Angus).
Peden, R. (2012, July 13). Beef farming – Main beef cattle breeds. Retrieved 12 13, 2013, from Te Ara – the Encyclopedia of New Zealand: http://www.teara.govt.nz/en/beef-farming/page-3
Thomas, H. S. (2005). Getting Started with Beef & Dairy Cattle. North Adams: Storey Publishing.