September Producer Spotlight- Lagrein

Mila- The history of present-day Mila dates back to 1962. Representatives of ten alpine dairies from the Venosta Valley met at 2:00 pm on March 17th, 1962 at the Hotel Sponding – in front of a notary named Dr. Peter von Ehrenstein – in order to establish the VSV or United Dairies of Val Venosta. The VSV had two goals: First, to transform the existing “Val Venosta Pasteurisation Centre” in Bolzano, which was owned at the time by the Parcines and Rabla` Dairies, into a company which would produce fresh milk for them. Second, they planned to construct a processing plant for themselves in Spondigna By October 28th, 1963, there were already thirty associated businesses present at the VSV general assembly, which was convened at the Hotel Stefaner in Dodiciville, in Bolzano. Johann Laimer and Rudolf Zadra – the Chairman and Director of the United Dairies of Val Venosta, respectively – moved to rename the cooperative since the member businesses all came from different areas of South Tyrol, and they felt that the name should not be linked to a particular part of the region. The group made a nearly unanimous decision: 28 out of 30 members voted in support. Members came up with the name Mila by combining the initial letters of the wordsmilch (German for milk) and latte. This name has been associated with a success story through to the present day.  South Tyrol was the first area in Europe to institute a region-wide policy of GMO-free fodder. This means a sweeping ban on genetically modified feed. In addition, antibiotics, hormones and low-quality food additives are strictly prohibited. Purchased fodder must also be of 100% plant origin and completely free of GMOs and other additives.

LAGREIN (Alto Adige, Italy) –Produced in the mountains of Northern Italy, Lagrein is a semi-firm cheese made from pasteurized cow’s milk that is aged for 60 days. For five days the cheese is soaked in Lagrein wine, a varietal grown in the area along with garlic, black pepper and other seasonings. Lagrein is produced by a collective of 3,500 farmers each with 12 head of cattle keeping small dairy practices alive and well in the modern age. By washing and aging the cheese with wine  we find it takes on a intriguing savory flavor with accents of wine and spice all balanced by a creamy and elastic texture. Case 1/4.5#