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Why Sustainability Is The Foundation Of Italy’s Agri-Food System

In the arriving months, the Next Generation EU program will allot about 10 billion euros for the environmental change in agriculture to be spent in 2021-22, and Italy will be able to take advantage of 2.4 billion euros. The program is part of the strategic Farm to Fork project to convert to agri-food systems centered on sustainability, inspiring farmers to implement ecologically approachable methods.

The impression of these policies on the Italian agri-food industry was evaluated throughout the Forum of Economies on the Agrifood supply chain, prearranged by Unicredit, Slow Food and Nomisma research firm.


According to the Head of Agriculture and Food Industry at Nomisma, Denis Pantini, the Italian food sector's additional worth is among the greatest in Europe. The same can be said for productivity, even though not all supply chains have consistent performance: fruit and vegetables, wine, cold cuts, and dairy are at the highest. In the case of exports, pasta sales have grown by +23.4% this year, while wines have gone down by -3.3% compared to 2019.

E-commerce has seen a rise since the pandemic, and this inclination to shop online is still on high ranks. For consumers' preferences, the trends are equivalent to those of the pre-Covid period: Italians buy native products symbolized by sustainability and are observant to normality, legitimacy, and food safety.

As per Francesco Sottile from Slow Food Italy, now small-scale programs are needed at the European level for thousands of small farms that are like tiles in a valuable ethnic and agronomic assortment. The bond between consumers and producers is on the foundation of Slow Food’s promise to indorsing local products and the cultures that have bred them.


The general director of Consorzio Casalasco del Pomodoro, Costantino Vaia, believes that the Tomato-based products are the leading character of Italy’s agri-food export. They are sent to 60 countries all over the world at this time.

Furthermore, just after California comes Italy at the second position of producer and processor of industrial tomatoes, and sells overseas approximately 60% of the production. The Conglomerate's primary business is tomato puree, then come ready-made sauces, condiments, and soups. About two-thirds of the Conglomerate’s revenue arises from exports.


As stated by the founder and managing director of LGB, Giancarlo Licitra (the second-largest producer of carob flour globally), exports make up for 95% of our entire turnover. Sustainability is no longer just a demand. Earlier, some people picked the inexpensive and not the most sustainable supplier; at present, the opposite is true. Yet big companies are in search of sustainable partners (plus to avoid consumer complaints). The current market drift is to claim the substitute of animal proteins with vegetable proteins and fibres. Moreover, the gluten-free market is getting bigger.


From the winery called Cantina Bartolo Mascarello, Maria Teresa Mascarello regards herself as a winemaker who manages a craft business initiated by her grandfather. A company indicated by small numbers but excellent quality. They grow in five hectares of land, three of which are allotted to Barolo wine production and two to wines for everyday consumption (60% of the entire output is sent overseas).

They follow a conventional method, which values their product, keeping in mind the history and typicality, which are their compelling points. Their customers are trustworthy: they have a direct relationship with them (both HoReCa and private) that persist a lifetime and move from one generation to the next.



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