In the Langa Astigiana and the area around Acqui Terme, this cheese was once known as furmagetta, robiola or arbiora. It was traditionally prepared by women, using goat’s milk, sometimes with the addition of a little sheep’s milk. The women would sell the cheese at the market or to local traders, and use the income to buy sugar, coffee, pasta and oil. Then, in 1979, a DOC (controlled denomination of origin) defined a production protocol and the production area, but allowed the use of up to 85% of cow’s milk, thus denaturing the cheese’s tradition. The DOP (protected denomination of origin) obtained later allowed a maximum of 50% cow’s milk, but a small group of cheesemakers continues to make the cheese using pure goat’s milk. It is excellent fresh or aged.
Production takes place from early March to mid-December. The minimum aging period as specified by the Presidium is 5-6 days.