Holstein Friesians are a breed of dairy cattle originating from the Dutch provinces of North Holland, and Schleswig-Holstein in Northern Germany and Jutland. The Dutch and German breeders bred and oversaw the development of the breed with the goal of obtaining animals that could best use grass, the area's most abundant resource. Over the centuries, the result was a high-producing, black-and-white dairy cow. With the growth of the New World, markets began to develop for milk in North and South America, and breeders turned to the Netherlands for their livestock.
Specialized dairy Holsteins from United States were imported to cross with European black and whites. For this reason, in modern usage, "Holstein" is used to describe North or South American stock and its use in Europe, particularly in the North. "Friesian" denotes animals of a traditional European ancestry, bred for both dairy and beef use. Crosses between the two are described as "Holstein-Friesian".
Watercolour and acrylic on a paper menu placemat (McDonald's Holland, undated), 24,5 x 34 cm, 2018, Private collection