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President Sacchetto announces the commercial debut.

PGI Red Apple from Cuneo

Domenico Sacchetto, president of Assortofrutta, the Association of Consortia for the protection of fruit and vegetable production in Piemonte, which includes the consortium of Cuneo PGI Red Apple, speaks to FreshPlaza about the market launch of the newly Protected Geographical Indication: "It's well known that timing and difficulties for the take-off of a new PGI are always higher than expected, as much as the need to establish co-ordination amongst commercial and productive realities, which is not always easy, as to the need to call the shots of inspection and bureaucratic processes which are always more demanding, comprehensive and challenging. All these factors together can create a certain grade of discouragement towards what initially began as a conquest of the local fruit industry, but that is likely to remain bridled among mountains of documents."

"On the other hand - continues Sacchetto - if you look at the many other Italian PDO or PGI Consortia, it can easily be understood that only a small fraction exceeds this initial gap of long formal procedures. Those who don't give up, usually switch to a serious development of the sector, built on three key aspects: control, marketing and innovation of the product."

According to Domenico Sacchetto, the GPI should be seen as a great opportunity: "Even before economically appraising the product on the market, to promote a team effort among the operators present in the area. Currently, for example, several stores are finalizing the preparation of packaging with the official brand, procedures that need first to be approved by the current inspections, still in progress."

From a commercial point of view, the red apple from Cuneo (which includes four varietal groups), is getting good prices due to the quality of the product, which can now be integrated by the value of the PGI itself, linking production to a specific territory which constitutes one of the distinctive elements.

According to Sacchetto: "The Protected Geographical Indication has great potential that once channelled into a process of collective marketing, will open up new markets not only throughout the country, but especially at European level, as it is a collective recognition and for this reason, expendable and recognizable within the boundaries of the EC. "To date, however, the PGI product present on the market is still too little represented to talk about numbers. "The commercial power of PGI is not an automatic consequence that can be claimed without any effort. As every challenge in the sector, this advantage should be first understood, then built.”

"On the overseas markets – adds Sacchetto - the market of red apples from Piemonte is already well established, in spite of the problems observed during the year, due to the political instability affecting the Mediterranean Basin, besides the large volumes produced in the USA, as well as the effect of unfavourable exchange rate and the loss of competitiveness."

In conclusion, we asked Sacchetto to comment on the possible introduction of a GMO apple which won't go brown, that also raised the attention of McDonald’s. "Given that McDonald's, here, shows interest in introducing typical Italian products in its menu, such as the meat produced in Piemonte in its range of hamburgers, I think that the company could do the same by introducing a PGI apple and, why not, a Mc Cuneo Red!"


Legal head office:
Via B. Bruni, 5
12100 Cuneo
Tel.: (+39) 0175 282311
Fax: (+39) 0175 282320

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