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La Berkel

The secrets of the slicer

The slicer: historical notes

The first slicer born on workbenches dates back to 1898, invented by a certain Mr. Berkel. The name is certainly not new as it gave rise to a series of editions and different models which are still quite successful today. The first model with its symbolic name "model A" marked the beginning of a new era, finally the butcher could offer regular and symmetrical slices. Initially the mechanism developed around a flywheel which, through gears, allowed the blade to slice the cured meat .

Today, there are some versions of the machine equipped with an electric motor, however many prefer the manual version due to the romantic and traditional spirit that using the slicer entails. In the more modern versions and especially for slicers intended for domestic use, safety systems have been introduced to avoid cutting yourself and work in total safety. The importance of the machinery gave rise to a series of curiosities and anecdotes which over time have enriched the value of the tool.

Berkel: question of records

Nowadays, to identify a machine dedicated to slicing, just say Berkel, and it is immediately synonymous. Once upon a time, however, the situation was different. At the time of his invention Mr. Berkel, given the growing esteem for the machinery reinforced by numerous awards, chose to expand production and enter the world of scales. The success was good, but not exceptional, however the innovative streak continued its expansion reaching markets that were completely distant from each other: ships and seaplanes. The interest in new frontiers developed thanks to the revolutionary and at the same time basic mechanical system which was the basis of the now famous "Berkel".

Berkel: question of colors

Today we also identify Berkel by its color: red. Synonymous with passion, engine, power and fire, the choice of color is the result of in-depth studies to make the product even more attractive and starting from the assumption that it would revolutionize the table of many. At the beginning, the slicer par excellence was painted in aseptic colors such as black and white since its intended use was laboratories and butchers where its sole purpose was to be functional. Berkel understood that to propose the product to tradition-abiding artisans it was necessary to attract and then demonstrate its innumerable potential, which is why he chose this colour: Berkel red. For any Italian it is easy to associate color with power and extreme aesthetics, just think of the mother color of Ferrari, here, Berkel has applied the same principle, obtaining - in his sector - the same result.

Berkel: question of price

Beautiful to look at and innovative in its use. A star on the rise who, in order to place himself and keep his place intact on the slicer podium, must also be accessible. Proposing a "never used before" machine at an exorbitant price was something impossible, even more so if the person purchasing it does not have the futuristic and innovative aura of the inventor. Here, companies that offer rental machinery find fertile ground in these situations and can offer cutting-edge machinery at a low price. It seems that renting a professional Berkel for a commercial business costs just under 10 euros per day. In short, reducing costs is really simple, and to remain faithful to tradition you can focus everything on the raw material: 100% Italian meat and a flaming red Berkel on the counter, for rent.

Berkel: question of a charcuterie board

Today the slicer is used to bring a respectable platter of cured meats to the table, but it hasn't always been like this. Exactly like all great discoveries, even for Berkel, the combination with sausages happened by chance. Initially the machine was set up for cutting steaks , ribs and Florentine steaks . In short, thick and substantial meat that needed care and attention. The case is even supported by the Berkel Model A patent which in the document shows a serial code (628 742) in which it is defined as a "machine for slicing German sausages". It seems like pure utopia, the perfect topic for a joke to tell at the bar, but instead it is pure reality.

Obviously it is necessary to keep the secret intact and continue to use the slicer for the use we know today. The cured meat finds its perfect ally in the machinery to offer a unique and inimitable flavor that only Italian meat can offer. And then, to put it bluntly, the Bel Paese has absolutely nothing lacking when it comes to the quality of raw materials. The story is beautiful, the choice to use a platter of Italian cured meats is a very respectable added value. Without ifs and buts.

Berkel: question of Italian rescue

1991 is a year to forget for history buffs. A fire almost completely destroyed the factory which had passed into the hands of the English. The desire to keep the Dutch name high unleashed a spirit of high-level reconstruction and in a short time, the factory was reborn in Rotterdam and with it all its prestige.

Until 1996. The European directives regarding workplace safety standards became much more stringent and risked destroying the myth since the English parent company Avery chose not to adapt to the new legislation due to lack of funds. A dark period began with few highs and many lows, until 2014. Italy with Rovagnati chose to take over the brand and the factory which, in doing so, regained value by combining the extraordinary innovative Dutch nature with the fantastic traditional Italian idea. Berkel, back to success!

Berkel: question of philosophy

Raffaele Aiello is the undisputed genius who can tell how passion combined with hard work turns into enormous satisfaction. Since he was a child he dreamed of entering the Berkel world, after being fascinated by that conglomerate of steel that cut slices of ham for his sandwich. He was a child and had a big dream.

Today he is an established man, he founded Michael tech Berkel, after becoming the company's agent and having experienced in the field what it means to offer and propose a machine of this level. Between Sorrento and Capri there are many delicatessens and delicatessens that offer freshly cut cold cuts using a red Berkel next to the counter full of Italian meat . A question of tradition which combined with the desire to offer fresh Italian meat turns into a perfect and winning combination. Berkel is a guarantee.