Why Is Prosciutto so Expensive?

Cured meats, including prosciutto, are a guilt-free pleasure for a lot of people.

They provide a delicious alternative to processed meat products that are often used as filler in processed foods.

The short answer is that prosciutto, when prepared correctly, is a delicacy with a high-end price tag. 

To make it, the pigs must be raised in a specific type of environment. 

They must be allowed to roam free and spend time in natural areas away from human influences. 

It’s also important to cure the prosciutto at the proper humidity level, which requires specialized equipment. 

If you’re lucky enough to find a reputable source of prosciutto, the final product should be very good. 

But even then, it will cost more than other types of cured meat.

Many people enjoy them because of their high quality and great taste.

Many people like prosciutto but aren’t too keen on paying a premium for it. It makes sense since this delicious ham is traditionally produced in Italy and made from the hind legs of a pig.

This article will explore the reasons why cured meat is so expensive.

Prosciutto is a type of Italian ham that is made from the legs and lower parts of pigs that have been salted, hung and dried.

Prosciutto can be very expensive because it takes so long to produce and is not easy to produce.

Why Are Cured Meats Generally More Expensive?


One of the oldest food preservation methods is salting meat. It works by extracting water from the surface of the meat and preserving it. A salt block is heated to extract the moisture.

Curing can be a long and arduous process, and salt may be one of the most important ingredients in your quest for good-tasting beef.

Saltworks in many ways; it acts as an appetite suppressant and increases moisture. The addition of salt to a cut of meat can keep it safe against any spoilage.

If you like eating meat, you’ve probably noticed its price. But, if you haven’t, don’t worry. I’m going to explain why that is, and how we can use this information to make curing meat more affordable.

Curing and drying meat isn’t easy. You need to follow a certain process to ensure the quality of the meat and make sure it’s edible. The process can last anywhere from 2 weeks to several months.

Meat curing is a process that takes into account several different conditions to ensure the safety and quality of the end product.

While many of these steps may seem simple in concept, there are many factors to take into account.

Depending on the type of meat you’re buying, a high price usually means that it was raised sustainably.

The meat was handled with great care, and a significant amount of attention is paid to how the animal was raised and fed.

With all these processes involved a single leg will cost you around $4500!

Why Is Prosciutto So Expensive?

Prosciutto is the name for dry-cured ham made from the hind leg of a pig or boar. It’s safe to eat raw because it’s already been dried.

That means you can use it as a garnish for your next salad or charcuterie board.

Prosciutto is usually sliced into thin pieces. As its texture can be overwhelming if eaten in large, thick pieces.

There are a lot of factors that account for the price of prosciutto. Some of them are:

Meat Quality

Meat is a foodstuff with a great deal of variation in quality. The primary determinant of meat quality is the breed of the animal.

Producers also influence the quality of meat by feeding, management, and slaughter.

They’re monitored and inspected regularly to ensure all the safety standards are adhered to. The price of prosciutto also depends on the nutrition of the pigs.

The prosciutto will be more expensive if the pigs are naturally fed.

This means that the pigs can graze and eat different herbs, grass, and plants. If the pigs are fed with commercial pig food, the prosciutto will be less expensive, but the quality won’t be as good.


The traditional way to make cured meats like prosciutto is by using only salt. However, it’s not just the salt that makes the difference, but also the way it’s added and the additives it contains.

The best way to cure prosciutto is using salt. That’s because the curing process in some ways is like adding artificial ingredients to our bodies.

These additional flavors will be harmful to your health.

However, this affects the price, and this type of prosciutto is often much more expensive.

However, the prosciutto is well worth the higher price and even has a different flavor.

Drying Period

Salting, drying, and curing are only part of what goes into making good prosciutto. Even more important is finding the right supplier for your product.

As you might expect, quality varies from producer to producer and the length of drying time can greatly affect your final result.

This process can take as long as 36 months. This means that by drying the prosciutto for such an extended period, the flavor becomes more concentrated which adds to its value.

If the meat is dried for a short period, it can be too chewy and soft, which isn’t a trait of authentic prosciutto.

Moreover, another critical factor is the climate.

In different geographic regions, the temperature and humidity levels can significantly impact how the meat is dried, and the result affects the meat’s quality and flavor.

The best way to get to know your prosciutto is to experience its unique flavor.

The flavor of your prosciutto may depend on the region it comes from, the style of making it, and how long it takes to cure.

Quality Control

The companies that are manufacturing prosciutto need to follow high standards and quality controls that make the meat safe to eat.

Sometimes they also need to get a certificate that shows the quality of the product. 

Companies have to follow strict rules to gain certification. These rules vary from country to country, and each country has different rules.

With all these rules and regulations the price also increases.


People have been curing meat for a long time. Some families even developed excellent flavor and high quality.

You can buy meat from the best-reputed companies that are in the business for a long time. The history of the company also affects the price of the prosciutto. 

Import Taxes

If you want to buy Italian prosciutto, you’ll need to spend a significant amount of money. It’s very expensive to export meat from Italy to the US because it is considered a delicacy.

The real prosciutto is expensive, but many other domestic brands are significantly cheaper.

However, if you want the real thing, you will need to be willing to pay a premium.


The reason why prosciutto is expensive is a combination of tradition, authenticity, and high quality. Prosciutto is an aged, dry-cured ham made from the forequarter (shoulder) of a pig.

If you’re thinking about buying it, consider this: You’re not buying just the meat.

You’re buying a piece of history, effort, and family recipes that have managed to stay authentic for hundreds of years.

It’s up to you to decide if the price is worth the money or not. I say it is!

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