Its ancient origins date back to Roman times: the name derives from “Mortarium” (mortar bowl, the instrument used by our forefathers to grind the pork meat). Successively spreading to many areas in the north and centre of Italy. It is produced from a mixture of top quality pork meats. The lean part is made up from muscle, mainly shoulder; the fat lardons are from the throat area, the most valued. Cooking takes place in traditional dry air ovens and can last over two days for large 'mortadelle'. This is the most delicate moment in the production process: only slow and delicate cooking can give the mortadella its typical flavour and aroma. In 1998 Mortadella Bologna obtained the prestigious European PGI recognition and in 2016, Mortadella di Prato (small city in Tuscany) had the same recognition.