News From Pantelleria, an appeal to the value of terraced landscapes

From Pantelleria, an appeal to the value of terraced landscapes

Institutions, researchers and producers face to face to preserve the future of these territories; Antonio Rallo: “Heroic viticulture rewards us with unique wines and an extraordinary landscape.”

A session of the World Meeting on Terraced Landscapes was held at Donnafugata, on Pantelleria. After the first edition held in China and the one in Perù, this is the third meeting desired by the World Alliance that was established in 2010 between institutions, researchers and producers who have at heart the future of terraced areas.

The objective was to deepen the study of terraced landscapes in order to understand their great value: these territories are, in fact, able to unite precious agricultural and food productions, soil conservation, transmission of knowledge and the conservation of a landscape of outstanding aesthetic value.

There are also a lot of terraced landscapes in Italy and from the Cinque Terre in Liguria to Pantelleria, they recount man’s ancient relationship to nature, shaped with great effort and dedication through agricultural activities.

This is why Pantelleria was chosen to present the characteristics of a terraced landscape that is the farmer’s admirable answer to the multiple challenges the island faces: the lashing wind, very steep slopes and not least the lack of fresh water springs and scarce rainfall.

“So we are speaking of heroic viticulture – said Antonio Rallo, winemaker and owner of Donnafugata, one of the speakers at the meeting; for us this means training the vine “ad alberello” (low bushy), manually and on terraces; a commitment that requires three times the labor required in hilly territories and that, for us, involves the maintenance of about 40 km of dry stone walls every year. However, heroic viticulture repays all these sacrifices, preserving the landscape and allowing us to produce something unique, like Passito Ben Ryé, one of the most appreciated sweet wines in the world.”

 

Marsala, 12 October 2016