It's around 20 years since the manufacturers of Black Forest ham first got together to protect their product. Their aim was to create a quality seal guaranteeing consumers superb flavour, controlled quality and a uniquely regional origin.
Today, the members of the Association of Black Forest Ham Producers produce and sell Germany's most popular, best selling cured ham. Black Forest ham is still made exclusively by companies in the Black Forest using traditional methods and carefully selected raw materials and ingredients. For retailers and consumers, the Association guarantees the superb quality of Black Forest ham by carrying out regular stringent monitoring through its Regional Board in Karlsruhe.
To make sure that this speciality with a great past also has a great future, the Association takes consistent action against imitations and, with its quality seal, guarantees the authenticity of this mild smoked ham with its narrow band of fat.
Black Forest Ham (which is covered by a Protected Geographical Indication (PGI)) is the most popular, best selling smoked ham in Europe. Since 1997, it has been one of the European premium hams with EU Protected Designation of Origin. This is ensured by the provisions of the law and EU Directive 510 / 2006, which specify the quality parameters and the manufacturing process in detail. Black Forest hams may only be taken from pigs which meet the given specifications as regards breed, feeding and age. The 50-day dry curing at 5°C, the two-week smoking over coniferous woods at around 30° C and the maturing process over several weeks, in which the climatic conditions of the region play a significant part, only take place in the Black Forest.
Which means that only those products bearing the words "Schwarzwälder Schinken" will really offer the best taste experience.