The Cigarello dairy it is now the largest cheese factory in the Apennines

The Cigarello dairy it is now the largest cheese factory in the Apennines


A three million euro investment deployed to increase production capacity and for an even more sustainable and accurate Parmigiano Reggiano production process.

Extension works have been completed at the Colline del Cigarello e Canossa dairy, making it the biggest cheese factory in the mountain area and district. The investment was rolled out in a two-year time frame to significantly boost production capacity and therefore the work force. Compared to its previous daily output of 90 Parmigiano Reggiano wheels per day, the cheese factory can now produce up to 150 wheels. Inside, the drying hall area has been expanded, where wheels are left to rest for a few days after production. A new immersion salter has also been installed to keep apace with new production levels.

“The expansion of the Cigarello cheese factory enables us to double production, thanks to a highly significant investment made without any public funding, in the Apennine area, making it the largest factory, not only in the Reggio Emilia province, but in the entire Mountain District – affirms the group’s CEO, Alberto Viappiani – We are extremely satisfied and proud because we worked hard to make this cheese factory a model of innovation and sustainability, with an investment that generates significant effects, not only for employment but also in social and economic terms, for the entire area.”.

A significant increase in production capacity has gone hand-in-hand with fundamental changes in favour of environmental sustainable. The lion’s share of investments were allocated for the installation of an advanced technological water purification system, as well as a new methane gas power plant, replacing the previous diesel one. “Our Group has undertaken a very important pathway towards environmental sustainability; it is no coincidence that we were the first Italian hard cheese manufacturer to develop 100% compostable and biodegradable packaging – Mr. Viappiani concludes – These expansion and innovation operations implemented at the Cigarello cheese factory enable us to significantly improve production efficiency and environmental impact.

Founded as a cooperative dairy in 1939, membership ID number 320, the factory is located in Carpineti (Reggio Emilia), in the heart of the Appennino Reggiano, located at an altitude that qualifies it as a mountain dairy facility. It became part of DalterFoodGroup in 2010, when the company first began providing milk for Parmigiano Reggiano production. The Cigarello facility is certified according to the BRC FOOD standard, AA+ level, and to ICEA for organic production; it processes different types of milk on a daily basis: from conventional to organic, from Mountain milk to milk from the Italian Pezzata Rossa Breed, destined for the production of Parmigiano Reggiano, with multiple ageing, from 12 to 40 months.