Otmaro Beti

Age: 40
Lives in Somaino Li Taiadi (San Carlo)
Valley and Alpine farmer

I am like a plant with its roots deep in the Valposchiavo. The valley nourishes me and is my inexhaustible source of energy and inspiration. It was here that I grew up in perfect harmony with nature and it is here that I raise my children to follow the same path.

I have visited many places and lands and have encountered many realities. They have expanded my horizons. But the longing for my origins was stronger and I always returned home where I finally settled and founded my family.

I am convinced that it is a great privilege to live in the Valposchiavo and I am proud to contribute as a farmer to the preservation of this tiny corner of paradise I call home.

I also love our local culinary traditions: simple fare made of few and simple ingredients, but always nourishing! They allowed our ancestors to carry on their arduous task of farming the land – and it is not so long ago that it really was arduous.

No highly touted gourmet menu can hold a candle to my mother Caterina’s home-made steaming plate of taiadin cun murtadela or salam!

It is both my profession and my joy to spend most of my time outside in the fresh air. I have always loved working with animals on the farm. How well I remember as a nine-year-old herding our cows at Stabluvedru at almost 2000 metres altitude near the Bernina Pass. Perhaps that is why that Alp is one of my favortie places in the valley.

Only a few know that that is where several 7-8th-century horseshoes and a gold-decorated spur were found. They are now in the Rhaetian Museum in Chur and provide proof that the pass has been known and used for over 1000 years. And even older, stone objects show that the area was traversed by stone-age peoples too.

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