S.S. 131 - 09025 Serrenti (VS)
It all started in Acerno (SA) in the second half of the eighteenth century, when Villecco grandfather Agostino, having heard about the excess of sheep milk on the island, decided to visit Sardinia. After verifying the truth of this assertion, Agostino made periodical trips to Sardinia: arriving with his family in December, when sheep have just lambed and started milking, and returning to Acerno in the spring, as the raw materials ran out.
Agostino Villecco was among the first to produce in Sardinia and to age in the Appennini Lucani. Later many other producers from Southern Italy came to Sardinia to make cheese intended for the export markets. At the time, Sardinia was used only for the production process, and was left out from the commercial side of the cheese market, since the cheesemakers from Tuscany, Lazio, Campania, and Greece made cheese exclusively to meet the tastes of their areas of origin. This was the way the Villeccos started too: in those times they produced the Moliterno, the Toscanello, The Pecorino Romano, and the ricottas.
The decisive turn came in the '20's: Agostino' son, Gerardo, though very young, demonstrated real entrepreneurial spirit and decided to settle in Sardinia.
He first chose the Marghine, and then moved to Marmilla and Sarcidano. The business grew: the liters of milk processed in one year increased from 100,000 to 800,000. And the number of products increased accordingly, as they received new requests from new areas for the Crotonese, the Canestrato, and the Calcagno.
In 1974 Gerardo' sons established the Central we know today and took the "great leap". Central is now 100% Sardinian. Its production processes are modernized and the company is appreciated in different parts of the world. The decisive step was taken when the many small dairies scattered all over the area were centralized into one large production center in Nureci. Which is then moved to a more strategic location, in Serrenti, close to many stock-rearing areas and on the main highway of the island, the S.S. 131, that connects Cagliari and Sassari.
Today, with its 15 millions liters of transformed milk, Central can be considered one of the most important firms in the sector; the company has made ductility its strength: it is the only firm with tailor-made production, according to the indications of its clients.
This is the reason why Central produces more than 50 different cheeses under its "Central l'originale" ("Original Central") trade-mark. With such a vast range, the clients can choose a product that suits their taste perfectly. Research and development activity is still important within Central, allowing it to improve existing cheeses and to create new ones so to keep customers satisfied and in order to find new markets to keep the company growing.