The training must allow breeders to understand the conformation of live cattle: anatomical landmarks of the musculature, description of the carcass conformation grid on the live animal.

Description of Innovation


The training of livestock advisers is essential. They are the first interlocutors with breeders acting on meat quality and best practices. In this context, it seems essential that breeders and the advisers accompanying them detect well-conformed animals in live animals.


Through training on the subject of "animal conformation", it is possible to:

- Assess the morphology of male suckler cattle

- Describe the living conformation of suckler cattle


Training should lead advisers and breeders to observe the side of the animal at the flanks and then the rear to detect the correct conformation. This observation leads to a classification of the animal within the "Body Condition Scoring" grid. This score ranges from 0 (very thin animals) to 5 (very well-conformed animals)


In the observation, 4 regions of the body are looked at:

- cavity around the base of the tail

- vertebrae

- base of the tail, hip bones columns and ribs

If visual observation is not sufficient, the breeder is trained in palpating the animal to assess the fat (for example at the base of the tail).



This training is intended primarily for livestock advisers, technical sales representatives, traders, production managers, quality managers, technicians in slaughterhouses and meat processing companies. These trained people then go into contact with breeders to give them the keys to understanding the conformation of their animals.


This training is provided by Idele, technical institute, and takes place in the form of presentations, discussions and morphological description exercises. This training lasts 14 hours (2 days) and takes place face-to-face, at a cost of 810 euros. This is a training provided over the year through 2 to 3 sessions, in different places of the national territory. The goal is to reach as many people as possible trained by this system.

Impact on farm performance

  • Better rating of the 'Grade of fatness' indicator within the reference diagnosis in France of animal welfare 'Boviwell'
  • Better conformation of the animal at the slaughterhouse, which leads to better remuneration for the animal
  • Knowing the body condition of the animals allows a better technical itinerary on the animals (animal feed, comfort, etc.)

Audio-visual material

A video, implemented by VetagroSup, explains the application of this training on a dairy cattle farm:

How to assess the body condition of a cattle based on the measurements of the Welfare Quality protocol? Answer to discover with Luc Mounier, professor and head of the animal welfare chair at VetAgro Sup.

Farmer comment (for Good Practices)

Cédric, a breeder in the Vendée, was able to learn about the various indicators and grids : 


“It is important to be able to assess the animals on our farm, before the merchant comes! We can then better understand the conformation that will emerge and the quality of the meat! These are real assets for negotiating selling prices with merchants. »

Further information