Spices and herbs
Spices are generically indicating aromatic substances of vegetable origin (e.g. tarragon, thyme, lemon balm, juniper, maize, saffron) that are used to flavor and flavor food and drink, and, especially in the past, also used in medicine and pharmacy.
Many of these substances have other uses, for example the preservation of food, or are used in religious rituals, cosmetics or perfumery: turmeric is also used in Ayurveda; licorice has medicinal properties; garlic is used as a vegetable in the kitchen.
Among the various foods we eat, few have had such a fascinating and mysterious history as spices. The word spices derives from the Latin "species", a term that in addition to the original meaning "species" was assumed in the Middle Ages that of goods or foodstuffs. The search for spices has led to the discovery and conquest of continents and the foundation and destruction of empires. Spices were once as precious as gold, jealously guarded, and were considered a treasure of inestimable value. They were the "goods" par excellence, coming from the far East. Obtained from roots, cortexes, shoots, seeds and berries, they were used to flavor and store food, food, medicine, perfume and a thousand other uses.
What are the spices today we know, but at one time they were above all a valuable "currency", competition for the control of their trade spawned wars and alliances, inspired great discoveries, and above all determined the strategic importance of commercial ports. New plantations were started in other French tropical colonies: the Seychelles, Reunion, Cayenne and Zanzibar. At the beginning of the 19th century, having no country with an exclusive monopoly on spices, prices began to fall and spices became less and less rare, and within the reach of many.
Today spices come from many different countries, and after centuries of struggles to control their trade, they are in common use and readily available. However, they remain ingredients that are never trivial, and arouse increasing interest. The vitality and magic of these ancient aromas has been preserved over time, and makes even the simplest recipe special and refined.
Each product has its own history, its own procedures, its own processing techniques. Once the hygienic and health suitability of the product has been established, the lot shall enter the establishment. Each incoming batch is entrusted with lot codes, which will identify it at every stage of the natural life of the product. Sensory control is the first evaluation that allows to identify the quality of raw materials.
Taste, color, smell are carefully evaluated. In the later stages of processing, spices and herbs are screened and selected.
Now the roads are divided: there are products that need grinding and products that can be used as such. Grinding is the most delicate part of the process of processing herbs and spices. The perfumes they give us are in fact due to the amount of essential oils present in the raw material
The mixings: aromas and flavors to be dosed with taste as they will be an integral part of the different productions.
Packaging is no less important part of production. The product can be packaged in bags of various weights, plastic and Pet vases, glass. The weight varies, of course, from the volume of the packaged product. In the case of potted products, after dosing the product is capsuled, passed by the weight control, by the metal detector to avoid the risk of ferrous contamination and subsequently labeled. The labelling fully meets the current regulations concerning hygiene and health safety, the traceability of food and packaging, the technical specifications of the various products.