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Parma Ham Museum

A tale of excellent raw materials and skilled hands, because as one charcuterie maker said, "to make a good ham, you need half pig and half man."

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Where is


Via Fabio Bocchialini, 7, 43013 Langhirano PR, Italia (261m s.l.m.)


What it is and where it is

The Parma Ham Museum is in Langhirano, which is the recognized capital of ham, in the fully restored complex of the former Foro Boario, splendid early 20th-century rural architecture historically used for livestock trading. Langhirano is an oasis of peace, characterized by the mildness of the climate and air, the evocative vineyards and the extraordinary Torrechiara Castle, marvelous on the hill, with its mighty walls, its 15th-century village, its elegant courtyard, its fascinating kitchens and its frescoed rooms.

Why it is special

The characteristics of the land played a key role in agriculture and livestock farming in the Parma area: without the salt pans of Salsomaggiore, the art of charcuterie would not have developed. This museum tells the story of ham in the round, including the history of this very important mineral, a food preservation tool. All the breeds of the pig, the history of pork butchery, historical documents on the activity of pig slaughtering over the centuries, a large sampling of ancient objects, but also gastronomy because Parma, not by chance is "Unesco Creative City for Gastronomy."

A bit of history

The fame of Parma Ham has its roots all the way back to Roman times. Parma, then located in the heart of Cisalpine Gaul, was renowned for the large herds of pigs raised by its inhabitants, who were very skilled in producing salted hams. Cato himself already outlines in his De Agri Coltura the production technology, which was essentially identical to today's. Many other influential writers spoke of this tasty food, including Horace, Plautus and Juvenal. Prosciutto di Parma also increased its fame in later centuries, appearing, for example, on the menu of the Colonna wedding in 1589.


Salt is a key element in the preparation of Parma Ham. That is why the Museum houses a collection of salts from all over the world, as well as objects related to salt from Salsomaggiore.

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Musei del Cibo

Salumeria and norcineria are ancient traditions, handed down from father to son. This museum then, not only tells the story of ham, but that of many Italian families who have made a living from this art.


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