Mozzarella di Bufala Campana represents the most important DOP brand in central-southern Italy and is the fourth at national levels and the third amongst the Italian Dop cheeses. In 2012, 37 million 56 thousand kilos of Mozzarella di Bufala Campana were produced, 25% of which were exported, mainly in France, Germany, USA, Great Britain, Switzerland, and Japan.
The Consortium for the protection of Mozzarella di Bufala Campana, created in 1981, is the only organisation acknowledged by the Department for Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies for the protection, safeguarding, improvement and promotion of this extraordinary cheese from Central and Southern Italy that is loved throughout the world.
The Consortium’s purpose is the production and commercialization of Mozzarella di Bufala Campana, the defence of the denomination in Italy and abroad, the encouragement of continuous improvement in the Mozzarella’s production methods and the consequent qualitative improvement of its production. It also aims to constantly check on production and commercialization and, in particular, on the correct usage of the Denomination of Origin. The production specifications provide for the use of cow buffalo’s fresh milk only, besides rennet and salt. This milk, in comparison with cow’s one, is far richer in proteins, fats, and mineral salts. About 4 litres of cow buffalo’s milk are necessary in order to get 1 kilo of Campania cow buffalo mozzarella.
The area of origin of this DOP includes the region of Campania (whole provinces of Caserta and Salerno, part of the provinces of Naples and Benevento); the region of Latium (some municipalities in the provinces of Latina, Frosinone and Rome); a small part of the province of Foggia (Puglia), and the municipality of Venafro (Isernia). The provinces of Caserta and Salerno represent about 90% of the certified production in the whole DOP area.
The DOP Mozzarella di Bufala Campana, by law, can only be sold if pre-packaged at place of origin (heat sealed bags, trays, cups, etc.). Each package must bear the following information: the entire regulations for the denomination of Mozzarella di Bufala Campana; presence of the logo with, below, the elements of the national and EU legislation, as well as the dairy’s authorization number.
Take care: where the package is a knotted bag, there must be, above the knot, a guarantee seal applied by the producer; mozzarella in unsealed packages can be easily replaced with a non DOP mozzarella. Only retail outlets connected to the dairies can hold unpackaged products but, at the moment of sale, these must be packaged.
All mozzarella sold with packaging carrying the denomination “Mozzarella di Bufala”, “Mozzarellina bufalina”, etc., are not DOP certified and are not denominations allowed by law. A mozzarella made with 100% buffalo milk but not DOP certified can be sold with the branding: “Mozzarella + brand name + of buffalo milk".
Enjoy it at its best!
It is advisable to eat Mozzarella di Bufala Campana on the same day of buying it. If not eaten immediately, it is best to keep it in a cool environment but still immersed in its own liquid. If placed in the fridge, take care to take it out some time before eating so that it returns to room temperature as this enhances the flavour.
Mozzarella di Bufala Campana is an easily digested cheese with a limited lactose and cholesterol content. It is also an excellent source of protein with a high biological value, accompanied by a moderate amount of fats. Furthermore, the cheese also provides high amounts of Calcium and Phosphorus, of water-soluble vitamins such as B1, B2, B6 and Niacin. Finally, is also a good source of vitamin E and Zinc, both substances that contribute to fighting the negative actions of free radicals. The decidedly low level of sodium renders it preferable to cow's milk mozzarella and other types of cheeses.