Agricultural quality products for territorial evaluation and tourism development in Sicily: the Pantelleria case

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The Agri-Food system is determined and conditioned by the effects of great phenomena, strictly related to territorial, environmental, social, political and economical aspects.Thus, agriculture has to carry out complex roles within the multi-functionality framework throughout production of healthy products, safeguard and protection of environment and territory, preservation and safeguard of bio-diversity, and by supplying goods and services to public, integrating with industry and agrifood distribution.Within such scenery, developed Countries, and in particular those of the EU, carry out strategies in order to adjust to new agrifood market conditions, and to respond to citizens-consumers increasing requests, aiming at quality of agrifood products by recurring to certification marks as a competitive instrument. Rural development becomes the mean to increase industrial and territorial competitiveness in European countries; agriculture is not only linked to industry and distribution, but it undertakes a new role which brings to its integration with tourism, handicraft and the restaurant industry, therefore contributing to the evaluation and to the development of the rural areas.Over 850 certified products are present within the Union, whereas 79.0% of approvals belong to the Mediterranean Area, and where Italy is, with 182 denominations, the richest European country for typical products.Besides these products, it is also necessary to stress the role of wines, them constituting one of the most prominent sectors of the Italian agrifood system, together with the numerous traditional products, still not certified but which, nevertheless, represent a great opportunity for territorial development. Quality products, qualify and reinforce productive and economical local sectors, thus increasing competitiveness and prestige of rural territories.Sicily is, due to the extension of its territory and its population, the biggest Mediterranean island and it boasts with an old agrifood tradition proven true by over 130 typical products, deriving from different agricultural productive fields and from the food handicraft sector . This last is able to trigger a type of tourism that may count upon environmental, naturalistic and the eno-gastronomic patrimony, typical of rural areas and that brings, out of season, touristic request. Within this context, the island of Pantelleria, has been object, during the past twenty years, to radical changes within the socio-economic framework due to the decrease of population territorial abandonment, but mostly because of expertise differentiation, it no longer depending on agricultural activity and by now employed in other sectors, almost all linked to the island’s tourist vocation that has come to being during the second half of the 80s.The greater presence of tourists promotes the development of correlated activities, predominantly constituted by small commercial activities. The acquired visibility brought to the island external capital : investments were put forward on public and private housing as well as on infrastructures able to sustain tourism. Increase of the registered number of houses, starting from last decade, makes Pantelleria an area with an “elevated touristic vocation”.The new touristic flow increases the request of typical local products, and among these, the most required product is “passito di Pantelleria” wine, nowadays also produced by many of the VIPs , owners of homes and lands in Pantelleria. The changes have substantially modified the island’s economy with undoubted benefits for the activ
Lingua originaleEnglish
Numero di pagine2
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2009


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