How would you answer this question?
There are various reasons that make the moment of the grape harvest one of the most important events for Italians.
The answer lies somewhere between the economic value and the social value that this moment has in the lives of Italians.
Let’s start with the first: The economic value.
According to the 2021 ISTAT data there are about 255 thousand companies that cultivate 636,000 hectares of vines, of which 46,000 hectares produce not wine grapes but table grapes.
For many years now, this makes Italy the principal wine producer worldwide (about 50 million hectolitres per year) so 19 percent of the world’s wine production, and the second wine exporter of wine in the world, both in quantity and in value. A chain of production, according to Coldiretti, resulting in a revenue of nearly 13 billion euro.
Did you know that just 3 of the 20 regions produce 59% of the entire Italian production?
They are Veneto (11.5 million hectolitres), Puglia (10.6 million hectolitres) and Emilia-Romagna (7.4 million hectolitres)
These numbers introduce us to the second aspect that makes the grape harvest so important in Italy: The social value.
The above are not simply numbers.
Behind the 255,000 wine companies there are many more than 255,000 families that with passion and dedication, day after day, carry forward the objective of producing high quality grapes, to highlight the roots of their territory by means of more than 300 types of native vines. They see the harvest as a moment of collective endeavour and social sharing and the achievement of a goal pursued with great commitment and sacrifice.
As a matter of interest: did you know that the oldest wine in Italy and of the whole Western Mediterranean seems to have been produced near the city of Agrigento nearly 6000 years ago? Our “Stella del Sud” line of wine has the objective of honouring the flavours of this ancient land, rich in history and value.
But returning to the grape harvest, because of the atmospheric conditions, this year it started earlier and the first vineyard which we will focus on will be that of the Pignoletto, about which we spoke in our June article.
How does the grape harvest take place and what are some aspects which the winegrowers should note at the harvest stage?
Follow us in the next article!