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Italy - A difficult year for cauliflower

“This cauliflower campaign was not the best, as poor weather conditions and heavy rainfall between November and December resulted in a loss of area of at least 30%, caused by flooding of the fields, which blocked harvesting. The product losses affected the medium-late cultivars the most”. This is what the president of Coop. Agr La Montagna, Giuseppe La Montagna.

“We cultivated 120 hectares of cauliflower for the current campaign, and despite the loss of 30% of the area we were able to sell well on both foreign and domestic markets.”

The agricultural cooperative La Montagna was founded in 2008 by three brothers, Francesco, Giuseppe, and Antonio La Montagna, and their uncle Claudio Antonio, boasting a long family tradition of vegetable growers. The farm covers a total area of 300 hectares. The main products of the company are industrial tomatoes, cauliflowers, and potatoes. In addition to these are minor productions such as escaroles, turnip tops, and fennel, ideal for crop rotation.

The farm owns 2 hectares dedicated to nurseries, for better management of the cultivation cycles and in order to reduce the production chain. La Montagna’s products are all GlobalGAP certified. In addition, harvesting operations are mechanized, except for winter references.

“Despite our ability to reduce losses, the winter reference campaign is to leave behind. On the contrary, endives are leading on the market.”

“For some time now, potatoes are being gradually replaced by industrial tomatoes. As a matter of fact, for the forthcoming campaign around 20 March, we will start transplanting 50% round and 50% long. The supply contract with La Doria, a tomato processing company, with whom we have been working exclusively for about 6 years, is confirmed again this year.”

“We have been supplying the Polish markets for about ten years now, which is a rewarding business. The most requested products are cabbages from November to date and new potatoes in April/May.”

“Looking to the future, we would like to be able to extend the zero residue on all our references and we would like to participate in innovative projects that use sensors and decision-making tools to monitor the phytosanitary status and humidity of the soil and, through a specific app, we would know when to intervene,” concluded Antonio Iovino, technical consultant.

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