Earthquake. Buy Prosciutto from Norcia and Lentils from Castelluccio!

I i (November 10, 2016)
Norcia. The earthquake struck one of the most important food distributors in Italy. We can help them to rebuild by buying their products.

The earthquake struck one of the most important food distributors in Italy, the one that created the term “norcineria” to indicate the art of producing pork that hails from the city of Norcia.

Norcia’s typical pork products are unique in their traditional production techniques. The prosciutto from Norcia, with the trademark IGP since 1998, is one of the many quality products that is at the risk of disappearing if an immediate solution is not found for the small farmers who can no longer tend to the animals in the wake of the quakes.

This is the same problem that dairy workers and shepherds face when they produce the “pecorino di Norcia del pastore”: a cheese made with sheep’s milk, a typical Umbrian product recognized and added to the list of traditionally Italian agricultural products.

Agostino Cataldi, owner of the company Patrizi di Norcia, is already preparing to move production, but he is afraid that the bureaucratic procedures can negatively affect production, signaling the end of the business. Similar appeal in the last few days was launched by Valentina Fausti: “There’s absolutely nothing left. We lost everything. We need water and fences for the animals.”

“We will not give up – says Vincenzo Bianconi, sixth generation hotel manager and owner of the fantastic restaurant Vespasia di Palazzo Seneca – We are the Japanese of Italy; we live alongside the earthquakes and we choose to stay here.” The Bianconi family, owner of four hotels and three restaurants, helps to count the damage. Along with other business owners, the Bianconis created the group “We are Norcia” to organize reconstruction efforts. “We will start with the town” – Vincenzo states – “then move to the tourist attractions.” We already started working again after the quake in September, and we were counting on this weekend, but we will not stop.”

“The paradox – explains Bruno Petronilli, culinary arts expert and journalist – is that the tourist industry is in crisis because it heard that the earthquakes were in Umbria, but the tremors were felt more in Rome than they were in Perugia.”

And we want to mention the Castelluccio lentils plant, which is famous for its blossoms in the spring. It’s a quality legume known all over the world because it can withstand both extreme cold and intense heat for long periods. It’s for this reason that Castelluccio lentils are of IGP certified quality. In this case the so-called meat of the poor is anything but cheap, because the peculiar texture and thin skin shorten cooking time, which is usually very long.

The culinary world, like it did for Amatrice, needs to rally. Buy their products immediately and donate the food: cold cuts, pecorino, prosciutto, lentals, and everything that comes from Norcia and its surrounding areas. This is the best way to express solidarity.

From Luciano Pignataro's blog >>