BRESAOLA, A PORK-FREE ALTERNATIVE30/09/2022
Prosciutto (ham), salame, pancetta: some of the most famous Italian cured meats are made with pork. Real top-quality food, prepared according to ancient methods rooted in our gastronomic tradition. The recent outspread of the African swine fever virus (ASFV), that is causing a severe disease in pigs and wild boars, is significantly impacting their sales. Furthermore, there are numerous countries in the world where the consumption of pork meat is not allowed for religious reasons. When it comes to keep enjoying food excellences though, Italy provides an alternative solution: it is called Bresaola and it is a cured beef from Valtellina, in Northern Italy.
This salted beef takes between two to four months to air dry, then it turns into a delicious deep red color. It is sweeter than ham in its aroma and tastes like its leaner beef version. Bresaola is one of the easiest charcuterie meats that can be prepared at home: to serve it the Italian way, you just need to finely slice it (no cooking is necessary), place it on a bed of rocket, drizzle it with a little bit of extra virgin olive oil, add some Parmigiano Reggiano shavings and accompany it with a loaf of good bread.
The easiness in its preparation – which makes it the favorite cold meat among younger consumers (29%) – and the fact that, being made of beef, bresaola is the ideal choice for those who do not eat pork, contributed to increase significantly its exports this year. According to the latest report recently released by Assica, the association of Italian meat and charcuterie industries, an increase of 8.8% in volume (for 965 tons) and 14% in value (for 19.1 million euros) was registered in the first quarter of 2022.
Lean and rich with proteins and minerals, this special Italian cured beef can be easily frozen with the IQF method to maintain its freshness and shipped all over the world for home consumption. For these reasons, its consumption is steadily growing in all those countries – such as Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Hong Kong, Kuwait, Lebanon and Qatar – where pork is forbidden but their local consumers do not want to miss the opportunity to enjoy an Italian excellence.