Grana Padano first appeared around the year one thousand, in the countryside surrounding the Po. It was a time of hunger and famine, when nothing could be wasted.
The monks therefore researched a method to transform milk into a non-perishable cheese. Their experiments in maturing created a hard cheese that could be stored for long periods and which was destined for a great fortune.
Grana Padano DOP (Protected Designation of Origin) is a hard, mature, semi-fat, slow-maturing cheese. It is made using milk originating from cows milked twice a day and fed green or preserved fodder.
Spinatura Grana PadanoMinistry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies
The milk is semi-skimmed through natural separation, and until it is processed it must not undergo any physical, mechanical or thermal treatments. After this, it is put in inverted bell-shaped copper boilers.
Estrazione dalla caldaia del Grana PadanoMinistry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies
The curd is removed...
FascereOriginal Source: Consorio Tutela Grana Padano
...and placed in special moulds for at least 48 hours...
...and at this stage the marks are made to indicate its origin.
Next it is salted in brine for a period of between 14 and 30 days.
ScaleraOriginal Source: Consorio Tutela Grana Padano
This is followed by maturation for a minimum period of nine months to over twenty months.
AgoOriginal Source: Consorio Tutela Grana Padano
A quality control expert will then carry out the fire branding, or will remove the marks if the product does not meet the required specifications.
MarchiaturaOriginal Source: Consorio Tutela Grana Padano
[Branding the wheels]
Grana Padano DOP is produced in the area to the left of the Po, in and around thirty provinces within Piedmont, Lombardy, Trentino Alto Adige, Veneto and Emilia Romagna.
Curator—Consorzio di Tutela del Formaggio Grana Padano