Valtellina Buckwheat Lombardy
“Furmentùn”, “fraina” or “farina negra” are some of the dialect names for buckwheat, a staple in the mountain diet until the start of the last century. Hardy, tolerant of cold and resistant to parasites, it was a useful crop that could be planted in the summer after the rye, potatoes and barley had been harvested. The first document to mention it dates back to before 1600. Buckwheat cultivation reached its height during the first half of the 19th century, then began to decline: farming the slopes and terraces was hard work, the harvest was too laborious and more productive crops were emerging. Today, just a few fields still remain, and most of the buckwheat consumed in Italy is imported.
Harvested in October and consumed year-round as a flour.
The Presidium wants to reintroduce local, organic buckwheat cultivation, and also restore the valley’s stone terraces, in an attempt to stop the abandonment of the land. The Presidium’s three growers also belong to the association for the cultivation of Teglio buckwheat and traditional Alpine grains. They follow a strict production protocol to ensure that the Presidium buckwheat is clearly distinguished from the products imported from outside Europe that are increasingly found on the market.
Valtellina, Sondrio Province
Presidium supported by
Teglio Municipality, SlowCooking Association
Slow Food Presidium Coordinator
tel. +39 348 6701642