Air-dried meat specialities have a long tradition in Switzerland. Centuries-old, well-guarded recipes, love of the craft and lots of time – that is the secret. Today gourmets around the world treasure the high-quality specialities.
In the 14th century, the winter months were long and hard and there was no way into the remote Alpine villages. However, in order to have food, they had to store provisions. In autumn, after the alp descents, the farmers slaughtered part of their herds and invited people to a “Metzgete” – a traditional Swiss butcher’s feast. The easily perishable parts, such as black sausages and liver sausages, were served to guests straight away. However, the farmers cured the most beautiful and leanest pieces of beef with a well-guarded mix of salt and herbs, and hung them in front of their Heimetli, their farmhouse. The constant wind dried the meat and made it keep for months.
What used to be a basic food of mountain farmers is now a unique delicacy and is one of the finest meat products in the world. The curing process has not changed at all: clear Alpine air, only the best pieces of meat, traditional recipes and, of course, plenty of time.
The importance of farming in Switzerland extends far beyond food production. Without the many small family companies and the typical landscapes, Alpine pastures would be almost inconceivable. Switzerland not only stands for quality and tradition, it also stands for sustainability and responsibility towards animals.
Switzerland has the strictest animal protection and transportation statute in the world. The entire value-added chain is also included in the concept of quality in Switzerland – after the motto "from the barn to the plate".
Swiss agriculture is predominantly made up of family companies. No wonder that many farmers still know their animals by name. High-quality meat products are ultimately created through strict controls and ecological farm animal rearing.