As in all highlands, the Aubrac Plateau's farmers could not have settled down and survived without cattle, which provided labour, fertiliser and food, producing milk, cheese and meat.
But milk was a seasonal product: cows could be milked at the same time they fed their calves only when the Aubrac Plateau's vegetation was lush. Besides, milk could be kept for only a limited period of time. That explains why the mountain breeders invented Laguiole cheese: to preserve the milk and consume it later.
As time went by, preparation practices and know-how, carefully handed down from one generation to the next, improved and enabled the cheese to keep longer. Laguiole gradually became famous as a unique cheese that ages well.
In the mid-20th century the issue of survival on the Aubrac Plateau, which is how Laguiole began, arose in different terms: what should be the response to the decline of traditional production, a serious threat to the dairy industry and to the region?