A natural diet of acorns and grass
The pasture, a space where Iberian pigs roam freely
The “montanera”, or feeding in acorn-rich pastures, is the final phase in the rearing process for the Iberian pig. This system consists of allowing the pig to graze in pastures, where it roams among cork oaks and holm oaks and gets fat on their acorns, its fundamental food before it is slaughtered.
The “montanera” phase stretches from the end of October until March, coinciding with the period when the acorns ripen. The animals enter this stage weighing around 90 kilos, and by the time they finish they can weigh anything up to 170 kilos in years of good acorn harvests.
During this stage, the Iberian pig lives freely and is constantly moving around, which influences the quality of its meat. In fact, during the “montanera” period, each pig requires approximately just over a hectare of pasture. In this fundamental phase, the acorns, with their high carbohydrate content, provide the animal with energy, and will be transformed into the famous fat marbling. In addition, the grass and herbs in the countryside add the peculiar aroma which distinguishes Iberian products.
The result: Iberian hams, shoulders and cold meats rich in oleic acid. Tender, select cuts full of flavour and unctuousness.