In recent years, the global environmental and energy crisis, climate change, water risks and the need to reduce CO2 emissions have led companies, including those in the fruit and vegetable sector, to rethink the concept of sustainability, which has become a priority not only for countries, but also for organizations and citizens themselves.
There are several agricultural companies that are investing in ecological and energy transition paths. Salvatore Lotta, commercial director of the Italian OP Agricola Campidanese, an organization that markets its products under the L'orto di Eleonora brand, is well aware of the issue.
Salvatore Lotta with his son Marco
"Strawberries, watermelons, melons, tomatoes and other vegetables are already being produced with the help of innovative and modern techniques. We have been using environmentally sustainable practices for some time, but soon we'll have an increase in quantities. The key words are: Agriculture 4.0, space and cost optimization, soil and water conservation, reduced use of chemicals, and renewable energy. Thanks in part to integrated supply chain projects, we are now in the process of converting many of our members' farmland, with an investment of 10 million euros. This is just the first step. The first 10 hectares will be completed this year. By the end of 2025, the goal will be 30 hectares.
We understand, therefore, that environmental issues generate very high risks and that it is a priority at an international scale to try to mitigate the effects of climate change, which continues to concern everyone.
"This year in Berlin," adds Lotta, "in addition to the usual activities planned with customers, we will convey to buyers the commitment to such transitional paths, which first and foremost impose a change of mindset. If the markets and retail brands want us to continue producing fruit and vegetables, they must accept the change, otherwise the areas will gradually tend to shrink, as companies are no longer competitive, while costs do not seem to be decreasing. For example, if we think about labor, compared to the past, availability has dropped by 20-30%. Innovative solutions, such as soilless-farming systems, could help find people interested in working in agriculture."
L'orto di Eleonora will be present at the fair in Berlin in Hall 4.2 – Stand A-10.