Our story begins in 2006 when Ale accepts a job at the University of Vermont as a professor in Psychology. Vermont is the perfect place to grow your food but while most limit their experiments to vegetables, a transplanted Italian will do crazy things, even learn to raise their own pigs just to have access to some good ‘ol cured meats (insaccati). It all started with 3 happy little piggies in a hut in the woods.
2011. by trial and error it was clear to Ale that pigs needed to be rotated to not damage the land. And it was also clear that an herbivore was needed. Since sheep can give meat and milk (= cheese) enters the sheep. Four Icelandic sheep: Fontina, Ricotta, Guendalina and Carmela. In the meantime we had transitioned from 4 pigs to 12 because there were too many people asking for our meat and because pigs are social animals and they like to be in larger groups.
2012. After much practice and reading it was time for Ale to go back to Italy to learn how to make cured meat. She found a norcino (a nomadic butcher that specializes in the production of cured meat) and followed him for a few months.
2014. There are so many pigs! We are exploding at the seams, so we look for a new piece of land and find 60 acres in Panton, Vermont. We pack everyone on a truck and go!
2015. Enters the stage: Stefano, a young agronomist from Torino came to Vermont to explore new farm realities and fell in love with the place. And with Ale. The two of them started farming together and slowly increased the number of pigs at Agricola, from 25 to over 100 in a couple of years. They shared the same vision: raise the animals with compassion and respect, treat the land sustainably, process the meat like a norcino would do. During these years they were renting a small USDA inspected processing room where they would do all the meat processing themselves; mostly fresh meat and occasionally salami if the shared “curing space” was available.
2019. Monti Verdi Salumi is born, the company dedicated to the production of fresh and cured meat. Ale and Stefano were able to find a space in Middlebury and through State and Federal grants they bought the equipment needed. Agricola Farm is still growing and doing well and Ale and Stefano begin playing farmers and butchers roles at the same time running back and forth between the two locations.
Since 2019, Monti Verdi strives to bring you only the most authentic and traditional salumi you can find in the US. Inspired by the norcini, the products are deeply connected to the land, to the animals, to the Italian heritage but most of all they are genuine, delicious, and made with love.
Agricola farm is our own farm, located in the small town of Panton, on the shores of Lake Champlain. Agricola farm is a small diversified farm that focuses on producing the highest quality meat from pigs, sheep and chickens raised on pasture in a sustainable way.
Vermont Heritage Grazers raises purebred Berkshire hogs, a heritage breed valued for its high-quality meat. The herd has access to pasture year round and meets standards for humanely raised animals. Alethea, the farm owner, produces all the grains and forage necessary to raise her pigs (250ish).