The first Charolais bull came to Canada in 1954 and was a 7/8 percentage bull purchased in the United States. In the following years, more American females and bulls were imported and these cattle were upgraded from the Charolais cattle that came into the United States via the importations from France into Mexico in the 1930s.
In January of 1959, the founding meeting of the Canadian Charolais Association was held and in April of 1960, the Canadian Charolais Association incorporated under the Livestock Pedigree Act of Canada.
In May 1965, the first import permits were issued for direct importations from France and in October 110 animals arrived in quarantine in Canada. In May 1966 the animals were released and headed for their new homes across Canada. There were many importations in the following years bringing in hundreds of bulls and females from France to be blended with the domestic purebreds upgraded in Canada forming the basis of the herdbook animals of today.
Canadian Charolais have been developed to be very structurally sound to cover the vast plains and tough terrain. They have been selected for calving ease (born unassisted and get up quickly), with performance, easy fleshing ability, fertility (calving at 24 months and every 12 months thereafter), udder quality (so no nursing assistance is required), while still keeping the meat quality has made them the number one terminal sire in the Canadian crossbreeding scheme. Also 80 percent of the herdbook animals are polled and have been suppliers of polled genetics to many countries around the world, including back to France.
In October of 1966, the first issue of the Canadian Charolais Banner was published and is still the official publication of the Canadian Charolais Association. In July of 1967 Canada hosted their first World Charolais Congress with subsequent ones in 1975, 1984 and 2006 and a number of World Technical Conferences with the latest one hosted in 2015.