"Five or six years ago, more than 50 percent of American consumers believed that truffles were a chocolate dessert and they didn't know that they are also and above all something else; now they know it" Vittorio Giordano, vice-president of Urbani Truffles, international branch of the historical pocket multinational truffle Umbrian, amuses the audience of the workshop organized during This is Italy Parts Unknown.
The market is evolving and acquiring skills ", continues Giordano," But consumers also have to be slightly educated, for example to understand that plant products have their own seasonality which must be respected if they are to be enjoyed at their best ".
Urbani's international success shows that a company specialized in a raw material of excellence, the truffle - of which today it controls 70% of the world market - can assert itself everywhere, and with very particular products; but the road to achieving this has been long and is always made complex by the peculiarity of the product, which cannot be cultivated but must only be harvested and is therefore subject to the unexpected weather and the changing scale of natural production. When a brand is in any case associated with quality,"concludes Giordano," consumers look for it, and this is the case of our brand, with the name of the Urbani family ".
Another Umbrian history, another success story in the world of Italy is Arnaldo Caprai's wine production:"No other Italian food and wine product has ever grown so much in the world as wine in the last thirty years", Marco Caprai, who leads the winery, begins,"and Italian wine producers have extraordinarily developed their presence on world markets in quantity and quality. And the United States is the first market. Can you grow up again? Of course, the need is to get manufacturers in a system with distribution, and of course with marketing: that's the challenge. We have 400 different varieties, and we must be able to explain the differences to consumers. But the opportunity is there and it's great, people want to buy Italian food and wine everywhere and anyway, not only here in the USA but also in China, for example. And then there are other factors of discontinuity and innovation to grasp, just think of digital, a real revolution, with precision agriculture, with smart-farms. Many new opportunities will be challenging but right to pursue them ".
The best introduction could not have in the workshop Catiuscia Marini, President of the Umbria Region:"The stories of Carrai and Urbani make it easier for me to express the policy of my region on this front. We are considered' the green heart of Italy' because our landscape is considered' the green heart of Italy' and because the Umbrian agricultural tradition is very important. 70% of the territory is agricultural, and the three objectives with which this activity is being carried out in Umbria are the trend towards organic production, the sustainability of crops with the maximum reduction in the use of chemistry, research and innovation in products. We have to combine tradition and innovation. Fifty years ago, wine was above all a poor food, a protection against malnutrition, today it is an experience. One of the great challenges of our country is the possibility to support much more the diffusion of its products. For example, in Umbria we have many small but excellent producers who should be helped to arrive, perhaps together, on the big international market, redeveloping the distribution chain for this purpose and telling the products through the description of their content, or rather their soul, which is rich and distinctive: and in this direction a great support can come from digital ".
An assistance, this is the "making system" for the benefit of small producers and the spread of their production in the world, all to the advantage of Gustoso, an extraordinary experience in the United States on the initiative of a "network of companies" that currently brings together eleven small and medium-sized and excellent Sicilian companies, represented at the workshop table by Frank Cascio and Paolo Internicola.
After the success achieved during the presentation of Gustoso Sicilian Food Excellence (this is the complete brand) in Palermo, the Network of Companies has arrived in New York in the media in the ambit of "This Is Italy", but will also work in Canada and South America through various sales channels.
Only the products of the companies that are part of the Gustoso network can be identified by the Sicilian Food Excellence Gustoso brand, offering the consumer an easy recognition of the same products, in terms of quality, safety and safety.