Trentino-Alto Adige Stakeholder Meetings
Meetings with Stakeholders of the Trentino-Alto Adige Regional Stakeholder Group took place earlier this year in May, focussing on chestnut and berry producers in the region.
The first meeting was held with the Chestnut Forest Owner Association (Associazione Marroni di Castione). Davide Pettenella described the Star-Tree project to the head of the association. The President of the Marroni di Castione Association, pictured left with Davide, highlighted the strengths and weaknesses of the association that has membership of around 100 forest owners, which supply the 30% of the regional production of chestnuts.
The president described the outputs of long standing investment in innovation and the marketing strategy of the Association, such as national and international awards for their know-how, products developed locally, the democratic management system of their forest and forest users and finally the local fairs organization and energy wheel of the association.
The second meeting was at Santorsola cooperatives, a system designed by local farmers and berry pickers to market their products. Santorsola is today the largest supplier of domesticated berries in Italy. The cooperative supplies fresh products to large retailers (60%) and farmers' markets (40%) throughout the year thanks to enlargement of the production areas in the whole country, especially in marginal rural areas. The wild part was considerable in the past; today it is almost fully substituted with domesticated varieties. Santorsola is today the most important example of a marketing strategy system implemented in rural areas.
The total number of families within the Santorsola supplier network are 1,100 families, showing the possibility to redraft the entire rural economy through proper land management, the understanding of local people's needs and a good synergy with the institution.