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Italy: Grapes may be sent to Canada once again

Back in June, Giacomo Suglia, president of APEO and vice-president of Fruitimprese, told FreshPlaza that a few Canadian phytosanitary inspectors would visit table grapes companies in Basilicata, Apulia and Sicily to re-establish business relationships between the two countries.

Last week, Canadian phytosanitary manager Gregory Wolff and ministerial officials Martin Damus and Dominique Pellettier have been welcomed by a few company representatives and officials Bruno Caio Faraglia and Sabrina Pintus.

Together with packaging company "Lara Fruit" and shipping company "Compagnia italiana della frutta", the businesses that promoted the event were Agricoper di G. Liturri, Agrigal, Coniglio dr. Nicola, Di Donna Trade, Azienda Dino Lamanna, Di Palma Donato e figli, Ermes di Giacomo Suglia e f.lli, Frutta Italia di Vito Montalbò, Giuliano, Nava, Peviani and Pignataro dr. Franco from Apulia; Azienda Novello Salvatore and Consorzio di tutela uva da tavola di Mazzarrone from Sicily as well as Assofruit Italia from Lucca.

The event was supported by Mipaaf, Regione Puglia and Regione Sicila and could therefore organise visits to the crops and packaging facilities.

After Rome, the first stop was Nicofruit, part of Asso Fruit Italia. From there, the Canadian delegation moved to Bari. 

The welcome dinner in Apulia.

"We managed to show inspectors the professionalism of our table grape chain - the facilities they have visited employ the highest technologies and hold all the main certifications," explained Giacomo Suglia.

"As we all know, direct exports to Canada had been suspended due to the fact that some non-harmful insects had been found in some containers of table grapes. At the moment, with the Russian ban still in place and not being able to export to other countries due to the lack of political agreements, the market is very limited. This operation was made possible thanks to APEO, which managed to coordinate the relationship between the Ministry of Agricultures, the Regions and the single companies."

The delegations visited companies in Apulia on 13-14 October and left for Sicily on 15 October.

Regional officers Schito, D'Angelico and Santoruvo with the Canadian guests and Suglia.

The visit ended on 16 October in the area that grows Mazzarrone table grapes near Catania.

"The Canadian technicians could verify that our vineyards comply with the strict Canadian regulations," explains Gianni Raniolo, president of the Consorzio di tutela dell'uva da tavola di Mazzarrone Igp (above centre).

Once back in Canada, the inspectors will hand in a report to their Ministry, which will then communicate its final decision to Mipaaf.

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