Herbartis project: Piedmontese and Ligurian enterprises open their door to foreign students
About 25 entrepreneurs and students coming from France, Spain, Portugal and Italy joined the “transnational mobility” that took place in Liguria and Piedmont (Italy) from April 10th to April 14th, promoted by the Association Terre dei Savoia and CREA.
The mobility is part of “HERBARTIS – Adult Training on Handicraft Production of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants”, a project approved by the European Commission under the Community programme 2014-2020 (KA2 “Strategic Partnerships” action), dedicated to strengthening new paths of education and training for producers of medicinal and aromatic plants.
After the meeting of monday evening in Sanremo, Liguria, the students started the four-day long experience with a morning full of seminars: “La lavanda del ponente ligure” by Franco Stalla and Cesare Bollani, which tackled issues as the crossbreeding of lavender and the variety called “Imperia”; then another seminar about the extraction of the essence of the bitter orange by Pietro Guglielmi followed. The conferences went on with the intervention of Andrea Primavera from FIPPO who talked about the challenges of the producers of MAPs and the one of Claudio Cervelli who brought to the attention the issue of the germoplasm in the development of new products. The intense day was closed by an interesting visit to the collection of plants of CREA, in Sanremo.
The second day was held in Savigliano, Piemonte, here at MÚSES Accademia Europea delle Essenze, after a welcoming coffee, the students went on a thorough visit to some of the enterprises of the territory; at Valverbe, in the town of Melle, they could put their hands on the making of infusions starting from herbs, while Euphytos, in the town of Rossana, opened the doors of its laboratory and explained to the students the process of extraction of essences using microwaves.
Late in the afternoon, back in Savigliano at MÚSES, a final seminar held by the owners of the enterprise Zafferano di Cuneo entertained the students with a presentation and a sensorial analysis of honey with the precious saffron.
“It was another important step for us: thanks to Herbartis MÚSES keeps gaining popularity at an international level”, commented Elena Cerutti the director of Terre dei Savoia, the Italian partner of the project together with CREA.
Back again in Liguria, the week went on among seminars and visits: at CREA Dr. Luisa Pistelli tackled the theme of botanicals while Mr. Anfossi from the enterprise with the same name illustrated the processes of the making of Pesto, the famous Ligurian sauce made from basil. In the evening at CeRSAA, in Albenga, Mr. Giovanni Minuto talked about the strategies of local development with the particular case of Chinotto (the typical citrus fruit of the western Liguria), Humulus Lupulus and basil.
All the students have participated to the seminars and visits with enthusiasm and interest. They claim to be very satisfied and showed much commitment to the whole week of mobility.
In the words of Eva Moré, coordinator of the Spanish group, lead partner of the project: “In Liguria and Piedmont we could see as producers are struggling to valorise their territory features: small lands are able to produce lavender and citrus oils, mountain areas to obtain high quality medicinal herbs products, amb temperate regions to cultivate basil for pesto, and new opportunities with Citrus mytifolia, Humulus lupulus, etc., by organising themselves in associations and cooperatives. Very interesting for developing the MAPs small producers sector!”
The week closed with the delivery of the official certificates to the participants. The next meeting will be in Barcelona, Spain, in June, with the final transnational meeting and final seminar.
Eva Moré – Centre Tecnològic Forestal de Catalunya (Project leader)
Josep Comaposada – Institut de Recerca i Tecnologia Agroalimentàries
Clara Lourenço – Associaçao para o Desenvolvimento do Concelho de Moura
Elena Cerutti – Associazione Le Terre dei Savoia
Barbara Ruffoni – Consiglio per la Ricerca in Agricoltura e l’Analisi dell’Economia Agraria
Christelle Aunac – Université Européenne Senteurs et Saveurs (UESS)