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Report of UNAGA visits to Puglia

Italy: Agriculture needs competent and accurate communication

The UNAGA (Unione Nazionale Associazioni Giornalisti Agricoltura Alimentazione Ambiente Territorio Foreste Pesca Energie Rinnovabili) National Congress was held in Bari from 10th to 12th October 2013. Around a hundred journalists took part.

The even was sponsored by the Agriculture Commission of the European Parliament, the Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policy; CIHEAM - IAM Bari, the Puglia Region, Expo in Milan, Accademia dei Georgofili, the Bari Province and Municipality, Accademia pugliese del vino, dell'olio e della cucina and Ordine federiciano enogastronomico di Puglia. 

During the Gala Dinner held on 11th October 2013, awards were given to Mr. Mimmo Vita, chairman of UNAGA, Mr. G. Rossi, chairman of the Federazione Nazionale Stampa Italiana (F.N.S.I), journalist M. Cossu and Giacomo Suglia, chairman of A.P.E.O. and deputy chairman of Fruitimprese, for the dynamism of the domestic fruit and vegetable companies.

In the photo, the prizewinners. Thanks to Mr. Roberto De Petro for the photo. 

A visit to producers in Puglia
Visits to various producers in the oil, wine and produce sector took place on 12th October 2013 led by Mr. Roberto De Petro. Journalists also visited the Dr. Franco Pignataro company in Noicattaro, specialised in table grapes. 

A moment during the visits. (photo - Mr. Roberto De Petro)

During the visits, owners underlined the need to invest in R&D for new types of grapes. It would be ideal though to limit royalties to the cultivar multiplication phase and therefore to avoid extending them to the marketing of the product.

A moment of the visit to the Pignataro company.  (photo - Mr. Roberto De Petro)

Journalists asked Franco Pignataro about processing costs. The entrepreneur said how, for example, packaging costs are inversely proportional to the size of packaging, so smaller packets are usually more expensive. He also reminded that often the table grape sector has to face double costs, as punnets are placed inside of cardboard boxes.

Giacomo Suglia highlighted the professionalism of table grapes producers and packagers from Puglia and pointed out the rigorous qualitative standards.

"The Italian agri-food sector is socially and economically important, so Institutions must help us and simplify red tape," said Suglia.

As regards the relationship between agriculture and journalism, Giacomo Suglia explained how the future of agriculture is based on communication and encouraged journalists to confront themselves with producers when they need to talk about the agri-food sector: "We need a competent and accurate communication that can represent our work without being banal and using clichés."

During the Congress, journalists were presented with table grapes packets supplied by Giacovelli, La Pernice and Az. Agr. Dott. Nicola Coniglio (in the photo below). They could also taste various samples grapes and found the Italia cultivar to be the most aromatic.

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