Valais meat specialities
In the past, the tough climate in the Alps compelled the natives to store away durable items in order to survive the cold season. And so with the help of the sun, the dry climate, the wind blowing through the Rhone valley and the ingenuity of the shepherds, methods of salting and drying were developed. While elsewhere meat was cured by smoke in large smokehouses, in Valais pieces of meat would be hung up in a storehouse or attic to be air-dried. Today, the IGP designation of origin (protected geographical indication) guarantees both the quality of Valais air-dried beef and that it is made using meat from Swiss cattle. Valais raw ham and Valais dry-cured bacon now also have IGP protection.