‘Finocchiona’: after PGI acknowledgement, increase in production is planned

Jessika Pini

What is ‘Finocchiona’? The recipe for this salami dates back to the middle Ages. Due to the high cost of pepper, the spice which was historically used in the production of sausages in order to favour a long preservation of the meat, the Tuscans added to the mixture abundant fennel seeds, which had the function of masking the bad smells from deterioration of meat, too. The mixture is prepared with parts of ham, bacon, lard, shoulder and hard fat of pork, garlic, salt, pepper, fennel seeds, wine, and made in sausages into a natural bowel. It is aged for at least 5 months.

The estimated production of the 46 companies participating in the producers association, for the current year, is 1,200 tonnes of product, for a sale production value of 9 million Euros and 17 million Euros consumption value. Fabio Viani, president of the producers association, says: ‘Our goal for the next three years consists in increasing production and consumption by 15-20%, which means an increase of at least 180 thousand kilograms, approximately 1 million Euros production value and an estimate of about 2 million Euros consumption value’.

15-20% of sales are intended for export, for an economic value between 900,000 and 1.3 million Euros. The main importing Countries are Germany, France, Belgium, Austria, the Netherlands, and Scandinavian Countries. Some sales are also recorded on markets outside the EU, in Hong Kong and the Southern continent. Interesting meetings are proposed in order to seek new markets in the Far East, in order to present the product, and the producers association is working with Italian authorities for bringing down the trade barriers with the United States, that currently prevent the export of salami with short seasoning. Finocchiona just falls in this typology of products.

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