Discovering mountain milk
Here's what makes it special

If you are a milk lover, you may have wondered what makes mountain milk special. Let’s delve together into how it is produced and why it is so valuable.

What does mountain milk look like?

The term “mountain milk,” as you can easily guess from the name, refers to milk produced in mountainous areas. It can come from cows, goats or sheep, which live in the so-called mountain pastures in summer. Mountain pastures are rich in fresh grass, flowers and other typical plants Of which dairy animals are greedy. And it is because of this particular diet that their milk has a full and fragrant flavor, which, according to many, is reminiscent of the “old-fashioned” flavor. For example, so-called “hay milk” has a herbal aftertaste because it is produced by cows eating fresh grass in summer and hay in winter.

About winter, when this season arrives, according to the age-old tradition of transhumance, farmers move animals further downstream. By doing so, they can protect them from the cold and give them the right nourishment to cope with it. But in winter, not all mountain pastures close their doors-some, for example, host cheese production.

Photo: Luca Basili

When can milk be called mountain milk?

For a milk to be called
, its production must follow specific rules. Animals must be raised above 600 meters. And milk processing must take place in plants that are within 30 kilometers of the milking site. These rules, established at the European level, aim to certify and guarantee the mountain origin of milk and help preserve the supply chain.

Why is mountain milk so valuable?

Mountain milk is so valuable precisely because is made according to rules that allow producers to guarantee the goodness of the drink, the transparency of the supply chain and the care of the animals. In addition, the continuation of historical agricultural practices, together with the short distances between the barn and the processing site, help maintain ecosystems, preserving biodiversity. That’s why mountain milk is so valuable-now that you know, you can enjoy it with more flavor!