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In addition to the scent of bergamot – Italian Cuisine


"I represent the third generation of a family of farmers since 1951. My parents had a plot of four hectares with plants of orange tarot but, given the economic trend, in 2015 we have grubbed up citrus fruits and planted a thousand bergamots for most of the fantastic cultivar quality ": this is Mario Menniti, twenty-eight of Monasterace who, with a degree in Natural Sciences, took over the reins of the family business, giving life to Bergamore to build a future by enhancing its territory.

Bergamot, not only for essences

Just in the area governed by the law for the protected designation of origin "Bergamotto di Reggio Calabria – essential oil" PDO, an area that has always had an agricultural vocation, operating in the production, processing and marketing of bergamot, the young Calabrese decided to place attention to respect for nature with its wonderful colors and fragrances, always seeking the authenticity of ancient flavors. “When we talk about bergamot we immediately think of essential oils used, as a fixative, by the best perfumers around the world. But, as has been discovered in recent times, the juice of the fruit has natural healing properties, for this reason it has begun to take into consideration also the pulp and not just the peel. With this awareness, in March of this year, I started to realize the idea of ​​marketing the fresh fruit "continues Menniti stressing that the natural cure-all the green gold of Calabria is defined precisely because of its uniqueness, as it is cultivated only in the province of Reggio Calabria, on the coast that goes from Scilla to Monasterace, by virtue of the quality of the alluvial and clay soils.
Bergamore was established recently but Menniti already has clear ideas: he has collaborated with the Calabrian Nutritionist Biology Association to plan together activities that promote bergamot throughout the entire national territory; on July 29, presented the project as part of an event organized by Coldiretti Giovani Impresa in Catanzaro Lido; aims to provide restaurateurs, confectioners but also many private consumers, convinced that bergamot should be increasingly present in the shopping list of Italians.

How to adopt a bergamot tree

"Our first activity, launched on 1 July, is Adopt a bergamot tree: we offer the adoption of a bergamot tree, guaranteeing the customer to receive the precious and protected fruit. Paying an annual fee, including any shipping and tree maintenance costs, you can order a 7 or 10 kg bergamot box, choosing to personify the tree with a name but also if you pick the fruit in December, January and February or directly receive the fresh product ”explains the Calabrian entrepreneur showing the handcrafted poplar plywood box from the“ Menniti and Mercuri ”carpentry, among other things presented to the Catanzaro Design Week for its innovativeness and sustainability as it , during disposal, it can be used as a planter or object holder.
The adoption can take place directly on the site www.bergamore.net, where it is possible to find the nutraceutical section with information on the properties and benefits of bergamot as an essential ingredient in the pharmaceutical, food and cosmetic sectors, but also a blog with sweet and savory recipes bergamot base, curated by chef Valentina Amato, founder of the Il Piatto Giusto cooking school.
"We are ready to expand and discover other worlds like that of cosmetics but we also aim at foreign marketing, especially in Asian markets that are attentive to the use of bergamot in aromatherapy and in the prevention of depression and Alzheimer's disease", concludes Menniti, declaring himself satisfied with the success achieved so far: 250 bergamot trees adopted from various parts of Italy, in just two months.

by Gabriella Cantafio

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