Go ahead — pick it
Believe it or not, I don’t think I’ve ever had an apple right off the tree before — it was absolutely delicious. Being in Italy on a fine autumn morning probably enhanced the experience, too. If I could eat apples like that everyday, my fruit intake would be greatly increased.
It was a different and interesting aspect of our blog trip to visit both an apple orchard and fruit processing facility. It gave me a look at the lives of the people and the industry of Emilia-Romagna beyond the usual traveler’s perspective. During my visits to the region, I’ve seen acres of olive groves, walked through vineyards, and even had a hand in harvesting grapes, but there is more to Italy’s agricultural production than olive oil and wine. Especially in the Emilia-Romagna region that has the soil and climate to produce many varieties of fruits and vegetables. There’s good reason that it’s known as one of the premier food producing and culinary regions of Italy.
Most of the apples we saw in this orchard, owned by Piercarlo Fantini and part of the Apofruit Italia cooperative, are Fuji and Pink Lady (one of Mr. TWS’s favorites) varieties.
Share it with the world
We also had a chance to walk through the processing facility in Cesena, one of the 12 production plants they have in Italy, seven of which are in Emilia-Romagna. Apofruit Italia processes Italian produce for distribution throughout the world. In the Cesena area, the main produce are peaches, apples, nectarines, apricots, strawberries and persimmons.
The plant was quite busy with workers moving along in forklifts and operating processing equipment, but my favorite scenes were those of the women who work on the rows of fruit in quality assurance, taking great care in their selections. It was interesting to note that many of the workers in the plant, doing manual or mechanical work, were women.
It’s apple time in Emilia-Romagna, so that’s what we mostly saw in the plant, but I did catch a crate of peaches that you can see top right above and the luscious nectarines below.
Have an apple
A visit to an apple orchard and then to the processing plant made me remember once again the advice all of us are given as children — eat your fruits and vegetables!
For more information:
Viale della Cooperazione, 400
47522 Pievesestina di Cesena (FC) – Italy
I’m linking this post to Marcia Mayne’s “Foodie Tuesday” series on Inside Journeys and to Nancie McKinnon’s Budget Traveler’s Sandbox Travel Photo Thursday. Enjoy other links to photos and stories on their sites, too.