Articolo disponibile anche in: Italian

There is a new original entry joining Chianti quality products… snail slime, secretion from the tiny creature. According to Roberto Dante Bredice, owner of the breeding company “La Chiocciola del Chianti”, (the Chianti Snail), the slime has great commercial potential.

He owns the company with his partner, Emanuel Patacchini, in Pianella, in the town of Castelnuovo Berardenga. The snail has always been a sacred animal for Roberto since he was little in Plata, Argentina, a city near Buenos Aires, where he graduated with a degree in law.

He then decided to travel to Europe in search of his dream. He arrived in Siena where he lived with an uncle at the end of the 1980’s, and tried various jobs, among which pilot of a hot air balloon.

He then began to raise snails in 2006. This turned out to be a fortuitous decision. He came in contact with Siena restaurants and now sells them circa a ton of snails per year, quite a few if we consider that you need approximately 80 to make a kilo.

Roberto, who had already heard of the medicinal value of snail slime when he lived in Argentina, began to search for scientific proof in order to understand the ways and secrets of transforming the raw material. After a few months of trials by an expert chemist in a Bologna lab, the awaited response arrived. “You, who live in Tuscany have created the “Brunello” of slime”.

In 2014, “La Chiocciola del Chianti” sold circa 2 1/2 tons of slime (whose therapeutic properties include cellular regeneration, antibacterial and healing properties). This amounts to about 80% of total national production. The snails are handled manually once a month for 2 minutes to produce the liquid.

National TV, like the program “Linea Verde” talked about the project. Roberto would like to create his own line of medicine with the name, “Helix”. In Chianti, snails are sharing the fame of Gallo Nero chianti wine!

Cosimo Ciampoli