Borghi magazine ~ the discovery of the fantastic world of italian medieval villages

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Discover Italy with Eataly: The meat of La Granda

Discover Italy with Eataly: The meat of La Granda

The contrast: a white crown and a green stole. Wooden weaves and their balanced variations. The warmth of family life embroidered in linen curtains. A glimpse into an ancient but still present stube, a traditional wooden room typical of Alpine areas. This type of room can be found inside the malghe, stone buildings that are used for alpine pasture. This is the view from Demonte, a small village in the province of Cuneo known since the XII century, situated in the middle of Stura Valley. The altitude and the mountain breeze, at 800 meters above sea level, have made this place a locus amoenus: this Latin expression means a happy place for man as well as for animals, where nature reigns supreme. Far from the stress and frenzy of the urban world, Demonte is known for its dedication to agricultural and zootechnical arts. The area is also known for being the one where the Piedmontese Bovine Breed originally generated, which today is protected by the Slow Food Presidia. This bovine breed has been protected since 1996 by “La Granda”, a breeders' association that gives value to the quality of meat by taking care of the nutrition and wellbeing of animals.

Alpine pastures and grazing activities are the protagonists of the place from spring to autumn.
The land is neat and meadows are cultivated too: the area boasts fifteen varieties of herbs in just a square metre. Piedmontese bovines eat these herbs and are free to graze all over the lawns, reaching the highest points during the hottest weeks of the year, at more than 2000 meters of height. Between folklore and tradition, the summer solstice introduces the transhumance, when animals and shepherds climb along the slopes of the Alps. Indeed, nature guides the breeders. People like Giorgio Arnaudo know this, since he chose his roots and a new identity after the depopulation of the mountain area. To cultivate the land in order to produce meat means to take great responsibility for its quality. According to Giorgio Arnaudo, this is the only way to guarantee a legacy for the next generations. This means being responsible for the world’s future. In this way, the consumer will be able to choose a different product. Eataly already did that. This choice offers greater respect to the farmer and the breeders, who treat land and animals in a different way. 

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