To answer this question, we talked to Fabio Brezzo, who told us about the patient, painstaking, dedicated work that goes into the creation of a Brezzo quality food concept.
Fabio, you’ll be presenting a new catalogue in April. Is it true that you experiment with ideas for new products during the winter?
We never stop working. After our Christmas deliveries, we spend the winter months focusing on innovation and creation of ideas for quality foods to add to the range in our catalogue. At one time, farmers and beekeepers used to rest in winter, whether they wanted to or not; but now we take advantage of this time for creative work.
What is the starting point for a new food idea?
Our love of our products, our passion for our work and, above all, our curiosity. Brezzo never stops working, year-round. We sample products, conduct research, take notes and discover niche products unknown to the general public all year round. We often start with honey, our core business; we look for interesting combinations, new forms of consumption, rare and precious varieties.
Can you give us an example?
Our Delizia di Miele e Zafferano from our Zafferano “Oro Rosso” saffron line brings together two outstanding products. We wanted to offer a new and different version of our fine Acacia honey, and we came up with the idea of combining it with another truly outstanding Italian product, Sardinian saffron, grown and harvested in limited quantities in the south of the island according to an ancient tradition. This intuition led to a product with a unique, intense, surprising flavour that will surprise even the most demanding gourmets, delicious with cheeses of all kinds.
Where are new products first tried?
We are proud to be a family-run company, and our first laboratory is our home kitchen. We taste, evaluate, and try new combinations, always with respect for tradition. Only if a product fully satisfies us in the home will we make it in our company’s workshop, adding the measures necessary to ensure replicability and food safety in accordance with the legislation.
Do you rely on external certifying bodies?
Of course. Before our products are released on the market, they are always certified by an external testing laboratory to attest to their quality. Our organic products are guaranteed by Bioagricert, for example, one of Italy’s strictest certifying bodies, which conducts periodic inspections of all stages in the production process, from the farm to the table.
Is it true that you work in close contact with Brezzo Partners and agents?
Sharing is the key to the process of creation of a quality food concept. After trying it, we involve our agents, Brezzo Partners and trusted assistants, asking for their opinion. We compare notes on formats, market trends and consumers’ real habits, so as to come up with products that are good, intelligent, and priced right.
What are the principles of quality behind the creation of a Brezzo food concept?
The excellence of the ingredients we use, their value and rarity, demand that we treat them with respect, making the most of their unique flavour and local character. We cook them slowly, gently, at a low temperature. Honey is not pasteurised, to ensure that all its sensory qualities are preserved, along with the peculiarities of the variety of flower from which the bees obtained the nectar. Consistently with this policy, we underline the specific qualities of food products by preparing them without any preservatives, sweeteners, flavour enhancers or other forms of alteration. Our craftsmanship preserves and testifies to the traditions and local character of the ingredients we use.