Angelo Gaja: fund research
We receive from the well-known producer Angelo Gaja and we gladly publish his proposal to finance research with European funds for the wine sector.
The European Community supports agriculture with a large donation of public money. The Italian wine sector also enjoys it. The successes of wine are celebrated for its propensity to export, the driving force of the agri-food industry and the prestigious image it gives our country.
More than one hundred million euros per year of contributions from the European Community are allocated to actions to promote Italian wine on non-European markets. It has been possible to benefit from them for 12 years. It is certain that, at least at the beginning, the public contribution was used to encourage the wineries that benefited from it to launch more courageous marketing actions on foreign markets.
At present, wineries that have in the meantime become aware of how essential it is to operate in foreign markets in order to achieve growth objectives and secure the company's turnover. The vast majority of the beneficiary wineries would by now have the possibility to draw on their own means, at least partially giving up public support.
It is then a question of seeing how part of the public funding could be invested, distracting it from the repetitive action of stimulating exports to the benefit of all operators in the wine sector. I would propose that it be allocated to research. Just to give an example, directing it towards the production of:
- rootstocks and varieties capable of coping with climate stress;
- Varieties suitable to produce PDO and PGI wines that can be cultivated with zero/low use of pesticides;
- Biological control systems (through the use of pathogen parasitants);
- Methods to combat the excessive accumulation of sugar in grapes;
- Identification of yeasts with lower alcoholic power;
- Clean" methods of contrasting polluting bacteria that can alter the organoleptic quality of wine.
In the presence of the problems caused by climate change, scientific research is the resource from which to draw to obtain viable and compatible contrast solutions. Research must be supported, not feared. The results it will be able to provide must be available to all, under the same conditions. Producers who do not wish to draw on it will have more opportunities to differentiate their wines.