Project Description

As the Italian wine has classification as DOC or DOCC the food has a similar label, this is DOP.
I know all those acronyms can be confusing but they are very important as they guarantee that the food is a local Italian delicacy and no imitation.

What does DOP mean?
DOP = Denominazione di Origine Protetta (literally “Protected Designation of Origin”)
So basically DOP It’s a guarantee that the food was made by local farmers and artisans, using traditional methods. In fact, by law, only DOP products like balsamic vinegar can carry the word “traditional” on their labels, because they adhere to local traditions.
So the DOP label may bring a higher price tag with it. But it also promises the highest quality!

What about IGP?
IGP is the acronym from Indicazione Geografica Protetta (“indication of geographical protection”). So actually there are 2 different certifications in Italy. IGP is less strict than DOP.

When did the certification story begin?

Starting with the mid – the 1900s, the Italian cuisine was in trouble as gained popularity in the USA and abroad.Due to the numerous movements around the world, and thanks to both wars, the market has been invaded by very low quality Italian counterfeit foods such as cheese, olive oil or prosciutto or wine. The problem was that all of these items were sold under a false Italian label marked as very good quality.

To protect its culinary reputation, Italy worked with the European Union to create legal certifications that encourage food and wine producers to focus on quality, tradition, and reliability. To earn the labels, producers must adhere to a strict set of guidelines, overseen by the government.

Below you can see a short list of DOP Italian food:

Mozzarella di bufala (Campania, Lazio): Considered to be more creamy than mozzarella made from cow’s milk, buffalo mozzarella is a true Italian delicacy. Love this tasty cheese?

Balsamic vinegar (Emilia Romagna): DOP balsamic vinegar, from Modena and Reggio Emilia, has a thicker consistency and richer taste than most other vinegar on the market—and can be aged for over 12 years.

San Marzano tomatoes (Campania): Long in shape and bittersweet in taste, these tomatoes are harvested by hand. They’re later crushed, canned… and used to make dishes like pizza and pasta taste out of this world!

Olive oil (Abruzzo, Calabria, Campania, Emilia Romagna, Lazio, Liguria, Lombardia, Puglia, Sicily, Tuscany, Veneto): This staple has the largest number of DOP varieties of any Italian food specialty, and it comes from many different Italian regions. Some regions even have multiple DOP oils from different areas!

Basil (Liguria): The best basil, beautifully fragrant and green, is believed to come from a small town in the province of Genoa. It’s no coincidence that the same area is famous for pesto—another DOP product in its own right!

Parmigiano Reggiano (Emilia Romagna, Lombardia): Perfect plain, paired with fruit or grated on a plate of pasta, this hard and salty cheese is aged for a minimum of 16 months.

Prosciutto (Emilia Romagna, Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Le Marche, Tuscany, Veneto): The many mouthwatering varieties of savory, smoked ham (Modena, Parma, Carpegna, Toscano, Veneto, San Daniele) vary in smokiness, aged and color.