The origins of the Consortium

Consorzio del Prosciutto di Modena was set up as a voluntary organisation on the 6th of October 1969; the extensive work carried out by the producers and the undisputed quality of the product resulted in its being awarded coveted Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) status at European level.

Consorzio del Prosciutto di Modena has celebrated its fiftieth anniversary.

It was the 6th of October 1969 when seventeen companies set up the “CONSORZIO VOLONTARIO TRA PRODUTTORI DI PROSCIUTTO TIPICO DI MODENA”. These farsighted businessmen had already realised that it was necessary to “defend, protect and promote the name of the typical prosciutto of Modena, to encourage every possible action to safeguard its typicality and the particular characteristics of the product, and to publicise its consumption, favouring domestic and foreign trade" (excerpt from the deed of incorporation).

About two years later, the Consortium's member companies, which in the meantime had grown to 26, had already voluntarily introduced regulations governing the production of Prosciutto Tipico di Modena, which was branded when the ageing process was completed. The promotional activity was also launched immediately, as can be seen from the following picture, taken from an insert included with the Resto del Carlino newspaper dated 8 December 1971.

The producers of Prosciutto Tipico di Modena spent the following twenty years asking the institutions for proper recognition of this product, so much so that a famous journalist from Modena, Sandro Bellei, referred to them in an article from June 1988 as “I moschettieri del Prosciutto” (The Musketeers of Prosciutto).

The intense activity carried out by the producers and institutions resulted in the promulgation of Law no. 11/1990 on the 12th of January 1990, which protects the designation of origin of Prosciutto di Modena by defining the production zone and the characteristics of the product.

Following thorough historical and scientific research coordinated by the management bodies, which led to the drafting of the production regulations deposited with the European Union, Prosciutto di Modena was awarded Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) status under EEC Regulation 1107/96.

For the producers, far from being a goal, this acknowledgement was a starting point for an even greater commitment to safeguarding and protecting the product, with the implementation of intense oversight activity and constant research to improve qualitative and sensory characteristics. With this in mind, the Production Regulations were amended in 2010, becoming even more restrictive, increasing the minimum ageing time from 12 to 14 months and forbidding the use of preservatives, apart from salt.

If we look back over the Consortium’s history, it is clear that the past fifty years have been devoted to improving the characteristics of Prosciutto di Modena PDO and to increasing awareness and the presence of the product both in Italy and abroad.

Acknowledgement of the chairmen

Our thanks go to the chairmen who have led the Consortium over the years

Egidio Pasini (1969-1978)
Ugo Anceschi (1978-1997)
Raffaella Baldoni (1997-2000)
Benito Vitali (2000-2006)
Davide Nini (2006-2018)
Giorgia Vitali currently in office

each of whom, considering their skills and sensitivity and depending on the historical moment in which they found themselves at the helm, have worked with the passion and tenacity that has always distinguished entrepreneurs in the sector.

The celebration of this anniversary was held in Vignola (MO) on the 29th of November 2019.