Experiences mold us: they give us a form, they give us something. When experiences are translated into emotions, they become for life and are the ones that we will tell others and will share willingly. These experiences are those speaking of who we really are and who we want to be. When our existences involve the presence of the others, of the collectivity, of the community of people who share a love for the territory, for its fruit, for its practices and for its identity, above all, we can say we have really carried out something.
Friday, November 25th, was the day that closed the circuit of visits and stories, experiences and life stories of the School of the Territory 2016. A day full of exciting moments.
The wonders of production
Earth, sun and work produce goodness. Goodness comes to us on our tables after passing within a production process. Without changing its essence, only by changing its shape. This is the story of the fruits of our territory.
The first experience was a wonderful discovery: we visited Conserve Italy with the Director Francesco Bassi. This production of great excellence has its own story to tell: Conserve Italy is the largest consortium in Europe where the fruit is processed. The facts speaks it clearly: from the factory in Barbiano di Cotignola, every day go out hundreds of thousands of products mainly intended for mass distribution. Conserve Italy is known to the public on the market under the brands of Yoga, Valfrutta, Derby and the last acquired Cirio, but does not fail to be present for licensing to large, both Italian and foreign, distribution.
How do you ensure consumers a high quality standard and customers distributors high reliability? The results depend, as always, by the ways and the ways here can not be that the production processes used across the product line: in the chain that starts from the first and comes to packaging materials. The operations are controlled scrupulously one by one: both scientifically, in the analysis of the processing steps of canned food, and technologically, in the logistic management of the finished products. Here we visit what we call a real production prodigy: in this extraordinary plant extension we are surrounded by machines that every second they are able to produce hundreds of jars, bottles, cartons, cans, and not only. Everything is completely catalogued in a deposit through a highly sophisticated logistics management system. This allows the product packaged and packed, piled in towers of 13 meters, offering more than 100,000 references ready to be delivered according to the requests. If this is not really a marvel…
The flavours tell us a story
We are at the second stopover of the day: the Ecomuseum of Palustri Herbs, true essence of the local culture. We wander about telling another story. Villanova di Bagnacavallo, where there is the Ecomuseum, was once a territory of farmers and artisans of reeds, which are useful to carry out an extraordinary amount of everyday objects and not: we only think about the construction of the typical huts of the place. The reeds for the houses, the straw for manufactured goods such as handbags, hats and other gear: symbols of life of a population that is present more than ever in the words of Maria Rosa Bagnari (portrayed in the photo during the visit), the undisputed entertainer of Ecomuseum. We breathe clearly the scent of straw and live in the memory dimension: the actor Ivano Marescotti, born in Villanova di Bagnacavallo, through a video message, reminds us that this marsh life is still close to us.
And how do you feel the closeness of rural culture? People at Ecomuseum know it well. The volunteers of the Association keep alive the memory and this means also to evoke the genuine flavours of the past: for this reason, the Locanda of the Allegra Mutanda (“Merry Pantie”) was originated. Original resting point inside the museum, hung from the ceiling it hosts a collection of historical and recent briefs. The inn is run by the work of the volunteers of the Association, who cook the most typical dishes with local ingredients and a secret one: the passion of those who want to transmit the culinary knowledge and the flavours of the table.
The Inn hosts us and welcomes us, recalling flavours that speak of this territory, even told by Burson local wine, which accompanies us.
From the countryside a tradition becoming production
Our itinerary continues to Printshop Miserocchi, workshop located in Santo Stefano di Ravenna. Pretext and source to listen to another story, the one of his manager Egidio Miserocchi, craftsman with a passion: the one of the printing on canvas of Romagna. We refer to you his words. The typical printing on canvas of Romagna was born in the nineteenth century in the rural communities of the countryside and is linked to the tradition of the festival: it served to decorate the oxen used for wagons in parades. These decorative paintings are still on the market, produced by a very limited niche production of 9 craftsmen. Also counterfeits, of course, that aspire to imitate them but that does not capture the soul of this wise processing from purely indigenous roots. In fact, to produce these paintings, there is a secret: the one of a great artistic and artisan preparation.
To make a print on canvas, it is necessary to produce the molds in wood inlaid with traditional decor, grapes or other fruit which are evocative of the countryside that saw them born, or with fantasies of creative invention of the craftsman himself. Copper is the typical color printing printed on canvas: it is obtained by mixing an iron oxide vinegar base, which reacts with oxygen in the air, gets its characteristic colour of this ancient craft. Fascinated by this story, we see in the shop take shape the decorum of a canvas in his hand print phase. The paintings can become decorative centerpiece or table cloths, but also of quality clothing accessories, such as bags and scarves.
Passion as leading motivation: engine of our actions, motives of our goals, driving force of the ideas that continue winning functioning. Passion first of all, to be unique excellence and continue the story of an ancient history…
Staying and Sharing Moments Together
The moments pass and if we capture them we will escape forever. Precisely for this reason, we want to share the experience of a day. Sharing is how creating: doing something helps you not to forget. When you do not forget you can live, experience, tell.
We spend time together for the last time of the day at the farm Ca ‘Gambellara Ridolfi in Ravenna, restaurant of the local Association The Work of Farmers, which collects about 20 agricultural realities.
Conviviality is around us and continues during the delicious dinner in the company of guests Silvio Bartolotti President of Micoperi S.p.A. and Alessandro Curti Curti Costruzioni Meccaniche in Castel Bolognese, Roberto Ossani, former Director of the Higher Institute for Artistic Industries in Faenza. Aeroclub Baracca Lugo was represented by the Vice President Oriano Callegati and the commander Marco Buscaroli. Therefore, the evocative documentaries of Micoperi with the beautiful enterprises that every day fulfills its industry, such as the one to liberate the Costa Concordia which sank there from the sea of the island of Giglio. Great Italian pride!
When stories do not end, but only interrupt
We know the stories may have breaks, but that never end really. Stories are always available to be taken up, extended, enriched, and become new stories that are intertwined to previous ones. Telling stories has more souls and we, just in the same way, are interrupting our journey, now in its temporary and provisional conclusion.
It is a meeting that involves everybody: Saturday, November 26th, at the Chamber of Commerce of Ravenna. Group working brings us together with the participants to analyze the itinerary of the School of the Territory, viewing to discovery, find, surprise with unique businesses and the excellence of the Territory. We are setting to the memory the photographs, the slides of what we have seen, visited, heard, experienced. We know we are not the same people who have began this itinerary: we have a new awareness in us. This is the meaning of the itinerary and the journey through places and within ourselves.
We want to compose, together with the Founder and Vice President of PLEF Ricotti Paul and Sara Cirone, the Brand Mapping of the Territory.
These are fundamental supports for the final analysis that will be presented in the form of the report on December 13th at the Chamber of Commerce of Ravenna, in front of the institutions and authorities of the territory and with the participation of businesses and people that, for various reasons, have participated and collaborated to this project.
We will be together again and united by the same will and awareness. We will stay together and with our territory. Thank you, thank you all of this experience which was so authentic, thrilling and enriching at the same time. See you on December 13th!