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Press release – 9th September 2011

The good Harvest - www.ibuonifrutti.it

The good harvest continues… the next stops are in central and southern Italy

One third of “the good harvest” tour has been completed. The aim of the tour, which is organised by AiCARE (Agenzia Italiana per la Campagna e l'Agricoltura Responsabile ed Etica [Italian Agency for the Countryside and Responsible and Ethical Agriculture]) and AgriGiochiAmo, is to learn about social farming in Italy. So far the tour has shown that this kind of farming – which is closely linked to the areas and the communities in which the food is grown – is carried out in lots of different ways.

The journey started on 28th August in the region of Campania and continued to other regions (Friuli, Trentino, Veneto, Lombardy, Piedmont, Tuscany and Emilia). The travellers - Angela Galasso, Francesca Durastanti, Margherita Rizzuto and Giuseppe Orefice – met entrepreneurs who combine their business projects with their lives, performing socially responsible activities.

So far, there have been lots of innovative activities and elements that can be repeated elsewhere, such as collective self-production and participated self-certification of production methods, cooperation among public bodies, associations and farmers in the Sannio region, providing funds for work placements in a farm in Friuli for disabled people.
In Trentino the project staff met Elisabetta, who runs a farm on the side of a mountain and combines the income from the farm with innovative teaching activities for the children in the valley's schools. In Veneto, Alessandro and Giangaetano encourage eco-pedagogy in their farm. In Val Brembana Ferdy created a real bastion of 'mountain culture' in a farm that is strongly focused on self-production, biodiversity and actively involving guests.

In Oltrepo pavese, Fausto and Elisabetta manage very high-quality wine production in which disabled people are involved. Piedmont has a very high number of social farming activities, in which agricultural entrepreneurs have shown they work as a team and where their innovative spirit (which led to ‘agri-nurseries’) proved that, with determination and persevering, so much that is considered impossible can be done.

Tuscany and Emilia Romagna are the regions that have rediscovered and valorised the best of rural culture, organising important teaching activities, sustainable, ethical production and waste reduction. Research bodies, social cooperation and farms all work together.

“The first part of the journey is over and we were able to learn about so many different aspects of farming and hear the stories of men and women who, day after day, pursue their objectives with ‘peasant determination’, without forgetting they are active elements in a local community.”

All the above (and the next part of the tour) will be described in a blog (www.ibuonifrutti.it) and will be included in a book, which will be presented on 13th November in Arezzo during AGRIeTOUR, Salone nazionale dell'agriturismo [National trade show of agritourism]