The farm is located in Partanna (TP), Sicily, at an altitude of 300 meters, 5 km from the sea, and benefits from very favorable pedoclimatic factors. This is where the production is highly prized, thanks to the mild coastal winds.
Now in its third generation, the company continues to be family-owned and currently has a surface area of around 40 hectares. Mirko Caracci (in the photo), 30 years old, a young and qualified agronomist, took over the reins of the company some time ago.
"Having had a solid background in wine and olive growing, we have been focusing more and more on fruit production in recent years. In fact, we have planted more than 1 hectare of avocados of the Hass and Becon varieties, which is a bit of an innovation on the farm. Somewhat newer is the planting of pistachios of the Pistacia vera variety, on the Terebinto rootstock, for a total of 2.5 hectares, which will only come into production in 5-6 years' time.”
The company also produces an interesting amount of apricots and grows all its products exclusively on an organic basis.
"The avocado is a fruit that adapts to the subtropical climate which, at our latitudes, finds its best expression in the Mediterranean area. Choosing the Sicilian avocado, and especially that of the Caracci Estates, rather than the overseas product, has a number of positive implications for Italian and European consumers. First of all, our avocados are grown organically. Secondly, the microclimate, the quality of the soil and the purity of the water, extracted at a depth of 70 meters, contribute to the rest. These elements amplify the taste and overall quality of the fruit,” continued Caracci.
"Our commercial references are the Italian large-scale retail trade. But we want to go further, towards the European large-scale retail trade, first and foremost Germany, which has always shown its interest in acknowledging the importance of niche and organic cultivation. This is the challenge for the next campaign.
Le Tenute Caracci farm also produces apricots, some of which are sold in supermarkets and the remainder in regional and national wholesale markets, but there are new products in the pipeline.
"Starting this year, we would like to start exporting our apricots abroad as well. We would like to take a leading role in the made-in-Italy sector, which is renowned abroad for the reliable quality of its supplies. There are four varieties grown on the farm. The Mogador is a very early variety with a medium size. Harvesting takes place during the first 15 days of May; Flopria is also early but has a very large size, between AA and AAA; Orange Prima and Orange Rubis are medium-ripening varieties, and harvesting takes place in June with large sizes and an excellent balance between sweetness and fragrance, very fleshy," continued the entrepreneur.
"Because of the special nature of our products, we are not affected by competition from Spain, which is Sicily's main competitor. Given the challenges we are facing, including Covid, climate change and rising prices for materials, as well as fertilizers and energy costs, competitiveness is based on quality and reliability. We are in a market segment that leaves no room for improvisation," concluded Mirko Caracci.