Breed of large, light-coloured cattle, developed in France for draft purposes but now kept for beef production and used for crossbreeding. White cattle had long been characteristic of the Charolais region, but the breed was first recognized c. 1775. A typical Charolais is massive, horned, and cream-coloured or slightly darker. The breed was first imported into the U.S. from a Mexican herd in 1936, but, because of problems with disease in the French herds, few were later imported. It is crossbred with beef breeds and dairy cows.