The Stelvio PDO is the first and only cheese of the South Tyrol region with the PDO certification (Protected Designation of origin). This cheese was selected as ambassador of South Tyrolean art of cheese making. It is a seasoned italian cheese of 50% fat in dry mass. When it comes to production, the use of typical native micro flora allows a typical ripening stage that will characterise the finished product unequivocally. These bacteria are what give the product its unique and typical flavour, thanks to their physiological activities which break down proteins and develop various aromatic substances.
Ripening lasts min. 62 days. Also the rennet is of natural origin and is won by calf stomach. The basic element of this traditional cheese is the milk of South Tyrolean alpine farms. The fresh milk used to make Stelvio PDO cheese is collected daily from 300 alpine farms in South Tyrol – 97% of which are located at an altitude of more than 1,000 metres – and is processed within 24 hours of delivery. Various documents and manuscripts clearly show that the cheese is well established in the dietary habits of both the farming and non-farming population. The widespread existence of „Schwaigen“ – farms in the 13th through the 16th century that paid taxes to landowners in the form of cheese – throughout Tyrol is well documented in land registers of the time. The fact that cheese was used as a medium of exchange, proves the importance of this product in the economic, and thus social structure of the population of that time. Production of „Stelvio“ or „Stilfser“ cheese has been in the historical record since 1914, when documents from the Stilfs (Stelvio) dairy describe production of this cheese.
Thanks to Consorzio Formaggio Stelvio.