Cherasco Snails of the Plains
Seal of quality
Typical food-farming product (PAT)
Snails raised on farms on the plains and hillsides of the Cuneo and Piedmont region. Of the Helix Pomatia and Helix Aspersa varieties, they are raised according to a complete biological cycle on free terrain in the open air, with totally vegetable nutrition. The product is then naturally purged and taken to the market completely cleaned and dried ready for cooking.
Product control and certification is undertaken by the National Edible Snail breeder Association with central offices in Cherasco (Cuneo) – Via Vittorio Emanuele 55 – Tel 0172 489382.
The snails are available either fresh or preserved. The fresh product retains all the aromas of the vegetation consumed during the rearing cycle. The preserved product consists of cleaned and pre-cooked snail meat, preserved in brine, and packed in tins, ready for cooking. The preparation stage consists of a preliminary boiling followed by shell removal, then the washing of the snail, tin packaging and vacuum boiling inside the tins.
Area of production
The main snail farms are scattered in the Province of Cuneo and Turin, in the plains area and in the hillside up to an altitude of 800 – 900 metres. The areas most used being those that are irrigated or with a good degree of natural humidity.
The complete biological cycle breeding of Helix snails began during the 70’s when a Regional law 48/1968 came into force; which regulated the harvesting of these snails. From the traditional “snail farms”, which consisted of small fenced areas behind houses containing the snails naturally found and held there ready to be eaten, thanks to the experience and experiments undertaken by the International Edible Snail Institute of Cherasco, in 1972 true biological snail raising farms were set up, divided into departments with specifically selected feeding. The developments of the farms led to the setting up in 1978 of the National Edible Snail breeding Association of Cherasco which represents many producers, and which undertakes to mark the snails produced by its members with the helix brand name. Cherasco also houses the International Edible snail raising Institute which acts to assist and train the operators in the field as well as in initiatives for the promotion of the product.