Italy: Consorzio BIA produces organic traditional tomatoes

"Our cooperative was founded about 20 years ago and is totally dedicated to organic production. We are located in south-eastern Sicily, in the territory of Acate (Ragusa). We also have members in the areas of Marina di Ragusa, Santa Croce Camerina, Scoglitti, up to Marina di Acate, all very close to the sea, with a microclimate that allows us to grow 12 months a year in greenhouses".

This is according to Gianfranco Cunsolo, president of AgroViva, a cooperative that can count on over 500,000 square meters of greenhouses, as well as several hectares in the open field.

Gianfranco Cunsolo

"Our main activity is to produce table tomatoes - continues the president - with a wide range of products such as smooth round tomato, cherry, datterino and multicolour tomatoes. The latter not only follow a mere combination of colours and different shapes but are the result of a skilful combination of various flavours".

The expert explains: "In the last period, we are expanding our tomato production with new varieties in order to guarantee our customers the constant availability of goods and, above all, higher quality in organoleptic terms, with the intention of following two market trends. The first trend regards the increase in consumption of organic products, while the second is increasingly oriented to the rediscovery of a traditional tomato, rich in flavor, as it was known before the advent of some cultivars of cherry tomatoes.

Cunsolo: "The ability to adapt to the needs of the market often makes the difference in agriculture. I remember well when we began to produce multicoloured tomatoes to stem the collapse of prices due to the surplus of product on the markets. Today, the innovation lies in going back to recover the values and flavours of the past, bringing the final consumer concretely to the tomato of the 70's and 80's, for size and taste.

AgroViva, which has always been open to innovation and collaboration, is part of Consorzo BIA. It is a network of producers that wants to meet the need of the large-scale retail trade to have interlocutors able to give productive quality and continuity of supply. It encloses under a single group some of the most famous Italian excellence.

To further strengthen the production potential of the Consorzio BIA, some of AgroViva's partners are acquiring a further totally organic land of 50 hectares to give Consorzio BIA the opportunity to guarantee further continuity to the large-scale retail trade and to expand the range of products.

In addition to large and small tomatoes, Agroviva produces aubergines, courgettes, cucumbers, peppers and mini watermelons.

The main markets are abroad, in order: the Netherlands, Germany, France, Scandinavian countries, for a total of 60% of the company's production, while 40% is destined for the Italian large-scale retail trade.

The cooperative has the most important certifications in the sector: Bioagricert, GlobalGAP, GRASP and IFS.

Bia Soc. Agricola Consortile s. r.l. 
Tel.: +39 335 6501764 (Dir. Gianluca Schiassi)

AgroViva Soc. Coop.
Tel. +39 333 2725258 (Pres. Gianfranco Cunsolo)


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