When we talked with Paolo Gennari to understand the organic project and to taste the new Parmigiano to be included in our selection, we asked him why they made a choice as ethical as demanding on a practical level.
Paolo told us that the choice of bio was taken into consideration when one of the milk suppliers decided to undertake the organic farming. Given the trust that Gennari had established with this farmer and the excellent quality of the milk always supplied, the idea of producing organic Parmigiano Reggiano started to make its way. A decision that supports the breeder’s choice and at the same time marries an ever more careful and conscious consumption trend, but above all, as Paolo tells us, completes the wide range of Parmigiano Reggiano produced by the dairy and which already includes the Vacche Brune, the Vacche Rosse (currently only marketed by Gennari even if the dairy has recently started its own production) and the long aging, up to 72 and 100 months.
The production of Parmigiano Reggiano DOP Bio is an important and demanding choice that involves all stages of the supply chain, starting from breeding that is based on some fundamental principles: the respect of the growth rate of the animals without forcing greater yields, the guarantee for the herds of grazing or to have free access to the areas outside the stables, the use of a feed based on fodder and cereals of biological origin or at least that have not been treated with chemicals and without GMOs. Shortly, a management of breeding activities geared towards animal welfare. All these good practices are monitored by specific entities that continue their controls also in the production and packaging stage of organic products.
For this reason, Caseificio Gennari had to prepare separate cisterns, tanks and ducts dedicated exclusively to the transformation of organic milk, in order to obtain the green light for the production of organic cheese, started at the end of 2016. With this equipment, the dairy produces every day from 8 to 10 wheels of organic Parmigiano Reggiano DOP from organic milk of Friesian cows and 3 wheels made with organic milk from Bruna cows. Regarding the composition, organic milk contains less casein and less fat, as Paolo says is a “less stressed” milk and that it translates into a yield of about 10% less in cheesemaking, while ensuring a high quality, fundamental aspect for Gennari standards.
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