The new frontier of long distance adoptions passes from the earth. And from the web. Because if there weren't any farmers 2.0 like Giuseppe Savino from Foggia none of this would be possible. Giuseppe is someone who uses the internet to "trace a furrow", as is done in the fields. The last of these furrows was traced in full lockdown, with the launch of the project Adopt a pomegranate.
He told us a moment after finishing the wheat harvest, after a few missed phone appointments because, as he says, "there is a precise moment when the bean is ready, but it cannot be foreseen when it is". And in the same field where the ears of corn were, right next to the rows of pomegranates, there will be pumpkins, so everything will be ready in November for a big party (pandemics permitting).
Who is Giuseppe Savino
But let's go in order. Giuseppe Savino is a farmer's son, as he likes to remember. The father is the classic man whose experience is all in the field, in the true sense of the word. As his son says of him: "He can tell you what problem the plant has by looking at it at two meters, while my brother who is an agronomist must study it under a microscope". Experience teaches, but Giuseppe's youth and being smart have integrated his father's millenary wisdom, bringing it to the virtual square of social networks, working on relations between farmers and on the Vazapp platform from which it started with a great project of agro-integration and sharing of ideas, also passed by the Contadinner (dinners between farmers to make them known). To this were added many other initiatives and that of the adoption of pomegranates shows that with a small gesture you can weave life stories.
Birth and realization of an idea
«We were in full lockdown and I realized that people had become used to video calls. I had long had in mind the plan to adopt trees, but a theft a few years ago had stopped it in the bud. Now the time is ripe to promote this idea, but I didn't want it to be just a pre-purchase, I wanted it to be an experience for those who decide to adopt a pomegranate ". An even therapeutic experience that has virtually brought people to the countryside at a time of closure.
The experience begins first by filling out a form, then there is the first video call, in which Giuseppe with his smartphone brings those who have joined the initiative to the field: the plant is chosen together, the plate with the name chosen for the tree by the holder is affixed, then when the call ends, Giuseppe sends the geolocation of the tree on whatsapp. In the middle there is a chat, which often ends up being touching: «I left to have trees adopted, but it is I who am adopting people's stories. I was impressed by the story of a professor who said he wanted to support this initiative, because it was made by young boys like his nephew who unfortunately is gone. There are those who called the Hope tree, hope, those who chose the name Futuro and it was a grandfather who gave the pomegranate to his grandson who is fighting an illness and for whom he dreams of a fruitful and painless future .
Also through social media, whatsapp and video calls, Giuseppe keeps up to date all those who have adopted trees on how it is going, waiting for the harvest to take place in October-November. What better time than the feast of the dead, which is very much felt in the Foggia area? We eat the grain of the dead, which is a sweet that promises fruitfulness and contains precisely cooked wheat, pomegranate seeds, walnuts, held together by the vincotto. In a village in the Dauno Sub-Apennine, in Orsara, every year on November 1st the involving manifestation of Fucacoste takes place, the bonfire of the heads of Purgatory, which is thought to be at the origin of Halloween.
"I undertake to send a box of pomegranates throughout Italy to all those who have adopted, making them watch the harvest from their tree, which will be at least in video call, but it would be nice if they could come in person to gather them with me, to live the feast of the dead here in Foggia and to eat together the wheat of the dead among the adopted trees and the field of pumpkins that I am about to plant .