Mountain air and unspoiled soil are essential to cultivate high-quality aromatic herbs in the same environments where they grow spontaneously.
"We just sow plants using geometry where they would grow anyway. We reorganize nature in tidy rows of oregano, rosemary, sage, thyme, bay and wild fennel, but just because it makes it easier to harvest them. Time takes care of the rest," explains Concetto Daniele, administrator of Aromi di Ultra.
Above and below: oregano from Monterosso Almo (RG)
The essences cultivated by Concetto Dinatale grow spontaneously on the Hyblean plateaus in Sicily and need no treatment. The company commercializes organic products with an environmental impact close to zero.
There are also no irrigation systems and therefore no pipes or hoses, meaning the crops perfectly blend in with the lush scenery of the Sicilian heights.
"This year, because of the low rainfall, the blossoming of one of our oregano crops is slightly late, but we will recover over the next few days, in time to guarantee supplies to our Italian and European clients."
A restaurant-size packet in the foreground
Sales channels: domestic and foreign H&R and retailers
"We produce around 5 tons a year of oregano,2 tons of rosemary and 2 ton of green fennel, which are our products of reference. Then we also have fennel flowers and some rare mixes. Most of our exports are destined to France, Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland, but we are available almost everywhere in central Europe."
"Lately, however, we have seen some change, maybe due to a renewed interest for Mediterranean cuisine and for Italian dishes in particular. Scandinavian countries are particularly interested in our range, so much so that we have recently been talking to distributors serving the Danish, Swedish and Norwegian H&R sector."