The word Filderkraut – a generic term indicating pointed cabbages growing in the Filder Region – designs a local product with a long ancient tradition. The special structure of the soil of the Filder Plain, particularly fertile and able to accumulate a constantly high percentage of nutrients and humidity, as well as the special microclimate, offer excellent growth conditions for the white pointed cabbage. After the Industrialization, canning industry of pickles began adopting primarily the round cabbage variety, as this was easier to be mechanically elaborated. This led to a reduction to 10% of Filder pointed cabbages of the entire cultivated surface (by that time approximately 40 ha). Nowadays there are only 3 of the old 20 canning companies. If compared to the round cabbage, the pointed cabbage determines a lower yield because besides a more difficult mechanical elaboration – i.e. in the production of Sauerkraut, where the long and hard stem can be bored only with a special tool – its pulp is extremely juicy. According to the latest documents, the growth of the Filder pointed cabbage dates back to the monks of the Denkendorfer monastery. In 1772 it appears for the first time in a written document by parson Bernhäuser in Bischoff, who wrote what follows concerning the Filder cabbage cultivation: “The white pointed cabbage is the only one which is grown in this area. What makes particularly appreciated the Filder cabbage is the delicate softness of its leaves, its white colour and in particular a whole better taste that makes it very different from other types grown in the nearby areas.” The strong connection between the territory and the product can be found in the fact that officially no seeds for the cultivation of this type of cabbage are sold or available on the market but only a restricted group of local peasants have and grow them with completely natural and traditional methods.
Image: © Marco Del Comune & Oliver Migliore