Significant efforts are being made to make Trentino’s apple production greener and more virtuous. The 2020 Sustainability Report presented at the conference “Sustainable relations between environment and market” on Friday 21st February at the Cocea auditorium in Predaia (Trento) presented the results of the activities carried out within the Trentino Sustainable Fruit Growing Project. These initiatives include mapping the Trentino area in terms of its biodiversity, certifications, energy use, and distribution of organic crops.
Apot comprises 6,549 Trentino companies employing 1,600 workers on 10,120 hectares, with a total turnover of €360 million. At the conference, the organisation presented the results of its analysis of the residues of the collected samples from its members indicates 98.8% compliance pre-harvest and 99.83% post-harvest. Last season, €34,000 in fines were imposed on those that did not comply. Organic apple production has more than trebled in the past six years and now totals 1,000 hectares. Area cultivated with resistant varieties is also increasing, with this year’s target being 180 hectares, compared to 10 hectares in 2014.
Chemical use in Trentino agriculture has dropped from 50 kilos of active ingredients per hectare (acaricides, plant growth regulators, fungicides, insecticides) in 2012 to less than 40 kg in 2018. Beekeeping is also spreading, with the number of beekeepers rising from 1,500 in 2008 to more than 2,000 in 2019, and the number of hives increasing from 22,000 to 34,000 over the period. All of the companies are GRASP-certified.
It is clear that Trentino’s agricultural sector is well aware now of the importance of sustainability, which suggests that the rapid progress recorded in the past decade looks set to continue.