Today, Azienda Agricola Colle Berardino manages about five hectares of land, one of which is covered in woods (another gift from Alice’s mother). Part of them were purchased or redeemed from Alice’s relatives, others were rented: “They were unproductive and were left fallow by the owners, who, in most cases, lived in Rome” explains Alice.
When she decided to attend the residential course, Alice had in mind growing lupines, a high-protein food used as animal feed, and starting the production of local high-quality animal feeds. However, during the training she realised that this would hardly be a sustainable project. «We therefore decided to try and produce legumes and cereals for human consumption. We joined forces with Tularù and other businesses located in the Rieti area to develop a local supply chain for the production of flour, bread and pasta from ancient locally grown wheat varieties”, says Alice, also highlighting the crucial role played by the consultancy she received at the end of the training to write a well-structured business plan and increase the efficiency of Colle Berardino administrative management.
Federico adds: «This year we planted two hectares with cereals, one hectare is entirely devoted to growing wheat in the Abbondanza variety, while the other is cultivated with Rieti, Verna, Frassineto and more Abbondanza cereals. Moreover, since early 2020, the network of producers and processors has become a cooperative, Cooperativa Grani Antichi del Reatino». The Cooperative includes nine members, all farmers, who also share a supply chain agreement with processors, resellers, associations, and Rieti ethical purchasing group.