St. Peter’s Dairy, Grana Padano ‘Hay Selection’ in a digital experience


The best tradition, in dairy production, is presented in streaming. Latteria San Pietro offers a digital experience to share the authentic values of its Grana Padano‘Hay Selection‘. From the stable meadows of the Mincio Valley to processing plants and maturing warehouses. The innovation we like.

Grana Padano ‘Hay Selection

Hay Selection is a very special Grana Padano, as its milk comes from selected cowsheds where the cows are fed exclusively on hay from the Stable Meadows of the upper Mantuan plain in the Mincio Valley. Rather than with silage and GMO soybeans, as unfortunately still happens even in PDO production (outside of organic and ‘GMO-free’ supply chains).

Feeding the herd is an essential element in the quality of the milk, and thus of the resulting cheeses. Indeed, forage affects both the health and welfare of cattle and the organoleptic characteristics of their products. And it is with this in mind that hay milk is finally being reaffirmed.

Polyphytic meadows-that is, composed of multiple crops and spontaneous grasses that alternate-are biodiversity heritages to be safeguarded, in the Mincio Valley as elsewhere. At the same time, the microbiological diversity offered to the herds raised with their hay is bound to reverberate on the microbiome of the animals themselves. With possible effects on consumers’ health and immune systems as well. An area of research worthy of further study.

Milk from hay

Hay milk, or ‘hay milk,’ derives from ancient alpine grazing traditions documented as early as the late Middle Ages. These traditions have been maintained in the alpine pastures, in the alpine arc in particular. The production of cheeses from hay milk has been specifically regulated in Austria since 1900.

In contrast, Latte Fieno‘ STG is a Traditional Speciality Guaranteed, recognized by the European Commission with reg. EU 2016/304 and subject to special certification that may extend to processors.

The TSG specification requires that cows, raised on traditional and sustainable dairy farms, be fed exclusively on grass, legumes, grains and hay. Without using fermented foods or GMO feed.

St. Peter’s Dairy, cooperation and sustainability

Latteria San Pietro is a Mantua-based cooperative dairy that produces more than 65,000 wheels of Grana Padano each year. Attention to sustainability, the environment and consumer health has been demonstrated over the years with the development of an organic supply chain of primary importance in the national production scene.

Attention to health is also expressed in Grana Padano ‘474,’ which has a reduced salt content. A choice of social responsibility, taking into account the primary need-and still largely neglected, by many practitioners-to help reduce sodium intakes in the diets of populations.

Digital innovation

Latteria San Pietro’s digital innovation has developed progressively, on a path of process optimization and development of traceability using IT tools. And it has reached a new milestone, with Microsoft’s contribution, in the‘Digital Cheese Experience‘.

By connecting with a series of cameras-positioned on the farm, in the dairy and in the ripening warehouses-users can stream into the daily reality of the Dairy.

A number of Grana Padano Selection from Hay tasting events are being added , attended by chefs, food bloggers and experts. The first event was held on 6.6.20. There will be no shortage of opportunities for replication, including live performances.

Dario Dongo

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Dario Dongo, lawyer and journalist, PhD in international food law, founder of WIISE (FARE - GIFT - Food Times) and Égalité.