"I am tired of selling off my produce. Last Thursday, my cherries were valued €0.50/kg by a collection center in Puglia. Even though they were a grade 22, I could not accept such a depreciation, so I decided to take the crates and head back home, thinking I could make other people happy with my fresh fruit," reports Roberto Seripanni Firulli, a young entrepreneur from Gioia del Colle (Bari) who owns 1.5 hectares of Ferrovia cherries.
Left: crate deliveries to friends. Right: the fruits.
"I prefer the smile of a friend, relative or professional than accepting a similar treatment. I then harvested other quantities during the weekend: I gave part of them to relatives and acquaintances, plus I tried selling the rest on Facebook Marketplace. When you go to the supermarket and see Apulian cherries sold at €5.99/kg, you just get angry. I chose to no longer sell them my produce, even should the price exceed €1.00."
"It is a sad and difficult campaign that, unfortunately, can no longer be recovered. There are those who uproot, those who sell at low prices just to make something and those who leave the fruits to rot on trees. I actually feel 'lucky', as I grow cherries in two different areas and one orchard was completely damaged by frost - at least I do not have to harvest those cherries."