Italian grower breeds zucchini that can be eaten raw
Italy is the European country with the most interesting market in terms of cultivated areas and consumption related to courgettes. The varietal offer is also developing.
Carmelo Calabrese (OP Colle D’Oro)
Courgettes Crü de Semillas Fitò have been grown exclusively for Italy by the Sicilian PO Colle D’Oro since 2011. It is a product suitable for raw consumption and is easily recognizable thanks to its bright green color with dark streaks .
Courgettes Colle d’oro Crü grown in traditional greenhouses
What are the benefits of growing this product?
“First of all, the fact that these zucchinis can be eaten raw helps to enhance all those beneficial properties that are usually lost during cooking. That would be enough on its own, but it is their soft and crunchy flesh and skin that have literally won us over,” said Carmelo Calabrese, Sales and Marketing Manager at Colle d’Oro.
Courgettes Colle d’Oro Crü being harvested
“Last season, 11 hectares of greenhouses were dedicated to Crü, which produced 250 tons in total. This year we have added 5 hectares. The production cycle is long, it lasts from October to the end of May and, this year, the objective is to extend by one month. Cultivation is done in traditional greenhouses, so without artificial lighting or heating system. Therefore, the weather always has a strong influence on heat and sunshine. After all, our facilities maintain the sustainability of production, as they have a rather low carbon footprint compared to other production basins. »
Colle d’Oro Crü courgettes can be eaten raw or in delicious recipes.
Exclusivity also brings advantages for the company’s turnover, doesn’t it?
“For this product, we have chosen to maintain a fixed selling price for the entire season, without modifying it due to changing climatic conditions or foreign competition, particularly Spanish and Moroccan. This helps to build consumer loyalty. We use integrated control techniques and market the products throughout central and northern Italy.”
“The next challenges concern the involvement of new partners so that we can increase the areas dedicated to the cultivation of Crü courgettes and reach new markets and destinations. We would also like to use organic cultivation techniques to improve sustainability. That’s why we’re also looking to introduce 100% biodegradable packaging solutions.”