On Pantelleria, the man in charge of farming policy for the Italian Government spoke at the meeting organized in collaboration with Donnafugata and the CERVIM.
“Heroic viticulture isn’t just an important production segment because of the quality of its products and the fame it enjoys internationally.
It is essential as an element preserving culture, history and local traditions and for the fundamental role it plays in protecting the territory, environment and landscape.
Defending and sustaining this kind of viticulture means guaranteeing incomes to a great many families living in environmental contexts whose structural characteristics mean exposure to a high risk of impoverishment and abandonment”.
With these words Italy’s Farming, Food and Forestry Minister, Luca Zaia, commented on the Zibibbo harvesting being done at Donnafugata vineyards on Pantelleria. Accompanied by the Rallo family – owners of the historic winery – the minister picked grapes together with the growers and then destalked dried grapes by hand, as traditionally done.
Later, meeting with journalists, Minister Zaia explained that “according to estimates made by CERVIM, the research, study and valorization center for mountain viticulture, heroic viticulture covers 7% to 8% of overall vineyards, corresponding to about 125,000 acres in absolute, out of the nearly 1,705,000 in Italy that Agea registered in the viticulture census. It is particularly vibrant in certain regions, such as the Aosta Valley, Trentino Alto Adige and Liguria and employs 200,000 people.
Concluded Zaia: “Today we have had the occasion to reiterate how important for us are the local businesses, traditional crops and ‘heroic’ farming that characterize our agriculture and Italian food and produce and which, in addition to being an important part of the national economy, constitute an irreplaceable legacy: memory”.
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