Allergens

Substances that cause an allergic reaction of varying kinds in predisposed subjects. Allergens are joined by those foods that may cause food intolerance.

Baffe

Pork legs prepared for producing Speck; they are deboned, cut into large sections and trimmed to remove rind and excess fat. The word ‘baffa’ is also used to identify pieces of lard, pancetta or other foods.

Binding

Operation that consists in binding a deli meat with appropriate food-grade string. Binding is done by hand, following traditional methods, or mechanically. Levoni deli meats are bound by hand.

Casing

Portion of the intestine of cattle, pigs, sheep or horses used as a casing for deli meats. Natural casings can be replaced by casings made using synthetic substances.

Felino

Municipality in the province of Parma, known for the production of typical Salame di Felino IGP, which is one of Italy’s most popular salamis. It is made with lean and fat meat, salt, peppercorns and, in some cases, a little white wine and garlic. It has a firm texture, a bright red colour and a mild taste.

Flavouring

Addition of spices, aromatic herbs and other natural flavourings. Originally used to improve meat preservation, flavouring is now mainly aimed at conveying specific aromas to the raw material.

HACCP

Acronym for Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points. Auto-control system implemented by operators of the food sector to assess and prevent hygiene and safety risks, through the identification of specific hazards and critical points, and the arrangement of targeted corrective actions.

Labelling

Set of information given on the label applied on a product, on the packaging or on the fastener.

Lactose

Disaccharide sugar found in milk. In the production of certain deli meats (such as cooked hams or sausages), lactose can be used as an additive to increase meat tenderness. Levoni deli meats do not contain lactose, which may be a cause of food intolerance.

Lardons

Cube of lard or fat from pork throat or back that is added to the meat mix for sausages conveying special flavour and texture. In slices, lardons stand out as white spots against a red or pink background.

Mould

Whitish layer that develops on the external surface of the casing of some sausages during the maturation phase. The moulds present on deli meats are prevalently of the Penicillium genus.

Organoleptic

This defines the characteristics of a food or, in general, of a substance that can be perceived by the senses: smell, flavour, colour and texture are organoleptic characteristics. These features enable correct sensory analysis of a food.

Peelability

Degree of easiness in detaching the ‘peel’, the external casing of a deli meat. The term peelability normally refers to the peel of fruit.

PGI

Acronym for Protected Geographical Indication, European quality mark. EEC Regulation 2081/92 establishes that “geographical indication means the name of a region, a specific place or, in exceptional cases, a country, used to describe an agricultural product or foodstuff originating in that region (…) and which possesses a specific quality or other characteristics attributable to that geographical origin and the production and/or processing and/or preparation of which take place in the defined geographical area”.

Pre-cooking

Industrial process of partially or totally cooking a food. Pre-cooked deli meats are vacuum packed. Before consumption, they can be heated up to a maximum temperature of 65°C.

Salting

Technique for preserving food by adding salt. Salting of deli meats can take place in brine or by covering their surface with dry salt, as is the case of dry-cured ham. In sausages, salt is normally added to the mix.

Sausage

Type of deli meat made by filling the meat mix into a natural or synthetic casing. Sausages can be dry-cured (salamis, etc.) or cooked (Mortadella, Frankfurters, etc.).

Sensory analysis

Method for assessing the organoleptic features of a deli meat or other product through smell, taste, sight, touch and sometimes hearing to express an overall opinion. Sensory analysis can be performed both at a professional and amateur level.

Size

Product dimensions. Deli meats can vary greatly in size, ranging from the small size of Mignon salamis (which can weigh less than 100g) and Cacciatorini, to the larger sizes of Mortadella, which can weigh up to 100kg.

Slicing

Operation of cutting a deli meat. Each product requires a different type of slicing by means of a knife or slicer to obtain thick or thin slices according to the deli meat characteristics and use.

Smear

A mix of pork fat. Smear, mixed with other ingredients such as flour and pepper, is used to smear those parts of dry-cured hams not covered by rind.

Smoking

Preservation technique that consists in exposing a deli meat or other food to the smoke produced by the slow combustion of specific types of wood. Deeply rooted in the food culture of Northern Europe, today smoking is mainly used to convey a unique flavour to foods.

SSOP

Acronym for Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures. These procedures are envisaged by the US legislation to guarantee the safety of foods. Based on the agreements between Europe and the USA, those who wish to export to the USA must comply with these norms.

Supply chain

Chain of all the steps followed by a product from manufacturing to sale. For deli meats, the supply chain includes the farm and the abattoir, the various production steps (salting, flavouring, possible cooking, maturation etc.), storage and packing.

Tasting

Tasting of a drink or food to identify its characteristics and assess qualities or defects through sensory analysis. The tasting of deli meats focuses particularly on assessing the appearance of the exterior and the slice, peelability, and olfactory and gustatory sensations.

Trimming

Operation that consists in trimming a piece of meat, to be used for producing a deli meat, to even out edges and remove protruding parts: for example, pork legs used for producing hams or the ‘baffe’ for Speck undergo trimming.

Tumbler

Tool used for tumbling. This operation consists in massaging the meat used for producing cooked hams so that brine can be distributed evenly for increased product homogeneity.