Name of region Wals-Siezenheim, Walser Gemüseland (Walser Vegetable Land), Salzburg, Austria






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Photo: BMLFUW/Rita Newman.

Walser Gemüse

Record number: 24 Disclosure date

1576 first mention of vegetable growing in a contract regarding delivery of the property within a family (in the archives of the monastery St. Peter).

Photo: BMLFUW/AMA Title Walser Gemüse (Walser vegetables) Abstract or claim

Specific methods and traditional knowledge for the production of vegetables applying environmentally acceptable methods by small scale-farmers in the Walser Gemüseland, near the city of Salzburg. Regional vegetable growing contributes to the maintenance of small-scale farming in Austrian agriculture and secures employment in the processing industry and in tourism.

Name of product, product class Vegetables

Name of region

Wals-Siezenheim, Walser Gemüseland (Walser Vegetable Land), Salzburg, Austria

Field of search Food and Agriculture

Name(s) of information provider


Names of applicant for title ----

Holder of knowledge or associated resources

Salzburger Gärtner und Gemüsebauern (Salzburg gardeners and vegetable farmers) 50 enterprises in Walser Gemüseland

Community Wals-Siezenheim

Grantee(s), holder(s), assignee(s) or owner(s) of title, if any ----

Descriptors - History:

For more than 400 years there has been a tradition to produce vegetables in the area of Wals-Siezenheim. The first mention of vegetable growing is found in a contract regarding delivery of the property within a family from 1576 (in the archives of the monastery St. Peter).

In his paper "Beschreibung des Erzstiftes und Reichsfürstentumes Salzburg in Hinsicht auf Topographie und Statistik" (Description of topography and statistics of the Archmonastery and Imperial Princedom Salzburg) the Bavarian priest Lorenz Hübner (1751 – 1807) describes agriculture on fields of the municipalities Wals, Siezenheim and Viehhausen. He mentions the cultivation of various cereals and of horseradish, beans, peas, beets, carrots, beetroot, cabbage, cauliflower, and various other vegetable varieties as well as the supply of the capital Salzburg with these products.

In 1907 school teachers from Wals submitted a request to the Imperial Royal Ministry of cult and education of the Austrian-Hungarian Monarchy to shift the day off school from Thursday to Saturday. They justified their request with the fact that 76 farmers of Wals had to bring their produce to the market and thus needed the hands of their children. Much to their regret the request was not granted.

50 out of the 76 farmers delivered their products to Salzburg, 5 to Hallein, 12 to Reichenhall, and 6 to Berchtesgaden, and 1 each to Piding, Hammerau and Innzell.

In 1948 the municipalities Wals and Siezenheim were merged to form Wals-Siezenheim.

Photo: BMLFUW/Rita Newman

Today about 50 enterprises produce vegetables, thereof 2 under the organic scheme. The producers are mainly family enterprises which use small-sized acreages.


under flat folio and spunbonded fabrics, approx. 3 hectares in greenhouses or folio-tunnels). Organic vegetables are grown on 12 hectares (0.5 ha under glass or folio).

- Region:

Wals-Siezenheim is located in the region Flachgau of the Austrian Federal Province of Salzburg. It is attached to the city of Salzburg in the west.

The municipality covers 26.62 km². As it has about 11,600 inhabitatns, it is often also referred to as the “Austria’s biggest village”.

Photo: BMLFUW/Rita Newman

Wals-Siezenheim is subdivided into the places Wals, Siezenheim, Walserberg, Walserfeld, Käferheim, Himmelreich, Klessheim, Gois, Loig, Viehhausen, Grünau, Eichetsiedlung, Schweizersiedlung, and Glanssiedlung.

The region is located 446 m above sea level and is the most important area for vegetable growing in the Federal Province of Salzburg.

It is situated between the mountain Untersberg and the city of Salzburg.

Climate and soil conditions:

The northern edge of the Alps is characterised by humid climate. The average annual precipitation is 1200 l/m² with about 140 l/m² each in June, July, and August. Salzburg is famous for its “Schnürlregen” (heavy constant “string-like” rain) in summer.

The lowlands of the region show mild winters and moderately warm summers. The annual average temperature is about 12°C, with 18°C in July and -2°C in January. In winter foehn may occur.

Soils are light and permeable.

Thanks to the light and well drained soils, south foehn and sufficient amounts of sun and rain vegetables of premium quality can be cultivated.

- Walser Gemüse (Walser vegetables):

Today about 40 vegetable varieties are grown, among them fruit vegetables and salads, high-quality potatoes and various cabbages.

Walser Gemüse claims to be different from other, conventionally produced, vegetables due to their natural taste and freshness which are due to the short transport distances to the points of sale.


Photo: BMLFUW/Rita Newman Method of production:

Priority is given to cultivation in line with nature and to the perpetuation of the

comprehensive knowledge of the relevant cultivation methods. Regular soil analyses and crop rotation are essential for vegetables of premium quality.

The production follows the requirements of Integrated Production (IP) and AMA–GAP (Agrarmarkt Austria – Good Agricultural Practice). The AMA Seal of Quality fulfils the criteria of GLOBALGAP for farmers in Austria.


Usually natural rainfall is sufficient for vegetable growing in the region.

Just after extremely long draught, irrigation with water from the river Saalach, other little creeks and wells may be necessary.


The annual yield of Walser Gemüse amounts to about 9.5 tonnes, thereof 4 % organic vegetables.

Quality control:

Quality controls, pesticide residue tests and other controls are carried out by SLK (Salzburger Landwirtschaftliche Kontrolle= Salzburg agricultural control) and AGES (Österreichische Agentur für Gesundheit und Ernährungssicherheit = Austrian Food Safety Agency).


- Marketing:

Photo: BMLFUW/Rita Newman

For centuries Walser Gemüse has traditionally been marketed either via farm-gate sale or on traditional markets in Salzburg like the ‘Grünmarkt’ and the so-called ‘Schranne’ (weekly farmers’ market).

It is also sold to regional restaurants, hospitals, boarding schools, and senior citizen

residences. Sometimes it is delivered to wholesale and retail and to the neighbouring Bavaria. Walser Gemüse is available throughout the year, but the focus is on seasonal vegetables. During wintertime potherbs and field salad are produced.

To be able to offer consumers the entire range of vegetables throughout the year, vegetables from other Austrian Provinces are sometimes bought and sold in addition (e.g. radishes from the Tyrol, tomatoes and cucumbers from Vienna).

Connection with the geographical area and Traditional Knowledge

- Light and porous soils, sufficient hours of sunshine and precipitation provide optimal conditions for the growing of vegetables of premium quality.

- Natural taste and freshness are the result of excellent cultivation conditions and short transportdistances.

- Cultivation in line with nature and the perpetuation of the knowledge about relevant cultivation methods.

- The production of Walser Gemüse is the result of Traditional Knowledge passed on from generation to generation: the Traditional Knowledge and expertise of vegetable farmers (adaptation of cultivation to the environmental conditions, choice of varieties, harvesting), direct marketing via farm-gate sale, farmers’ markets and marketing to wholesale, retail and gastronomy.

- Protection: -

Key words

Food and Agriculture, Traditional Knowledge, Austria, Salzburg, region, Walser Gemüseland, Walser Vegetable Land, vegetables, salad, fruit vegetables, table potatoes, cabbage, Walser Gemüse, Walser vegetables

Bibliography/ References

- 1576 contract regarding delivery of the property within a family archive of the monastery St. Peter.

- Der Krautkopf als köstliches Sommergemüse - Gemüse, älter als die Menschheit

(6) - Genuss Region Walser Gemüse 151%2C%2C

- Indication to vegetable gardening in Wals given by Lorenz Hübner in: Beschreibung des Erzstiftes und Reichsfürstentum Salzburg in Hinsicht auf Topographie und Statistik; Salzburg das flache Land (1751 - 1807)

- Salzbuger Land, Salzburg, Salzkammergut d+bodentypen&source=web&ots=URW6URNZP7&sig=mv17fp7Sa5vP0P6hAILEY5BWUS g&hl=de&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=3&ct=result#PPA20,M1

- Salzburger Schranne - Über das Walser Gemüseland - Wals-Siezenheim - Wals-Siezenheim - Walser Gemüse

All internet references last accessed on 21 October 2008. Language code German Product of yes Regional contact

Die Salzburger Gärtner und Gemüsebauern Trausnitz Pauline Schwarzstrasse 19 5024 Salzburg Phone: 0043 662 870571 345 Mobile: 0664 5051200 Fax: 0662 870571 324 E-mail:





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