Allegrini 2024

Pope Francis to Italian wine: to make a quality product you must respect the Creation

The Pontiff met “a significant organization on the Italian and international scene” in a private audience, inviting them to take inspiration from Saint Francis

“Dear brothers and sisters, good morning! I welcome you, I salute Monsignor Pompili and each one of you. You are here on the occasion of the conference that Vinitaly has organized on the theme, “Francesco’s economy and the Italian wine world”. In terms of the number of companies involved, the quality of production and the employment impact, yours is certainly a significant organization, both on the Italian and International wine scene. It is therefore good that you find yourselves reflecting together on the ethical aspects and moral responsibilities that all this entails, and that you draw inspiration from the “Poverello”, St. Francis of Assisi. The fundamental lines on which you have chosen to move - mindful of the environment, work and healthy consumption habits - indicate an attitude focused on respect, at various levels. Respect, in your work, is definitely fundamental to produce a quality product, and applying industrial techniques and commercial logic is not enough. The land, the vine, cultivation, fermentation and ripening processes require consistency, attention, and they require patience”.
Pope Francis addressed the community of the Italian wine world that he met in a private audience in the Vatican Apostolic Palace in Vatican City, on the day dedicated to the “Economy of Francis and the Italian wine world”, promoted by the Diocese of Verona and Veronafiere with Vinitaly in Rome (Alessandro Regoli, director of WineNews also participated, ed.).
The Holy Scripture speaks of these themes”, the Holy Father said in his greeting, “the Letter of James comes to mind, which says, “Look at the farmer: he waits patiently for the precious fruit of the earth until it has received the first and the last rains” (James 5:7). And I am thinking above all of Jesus, who, in the last image he leaves to his disciples, speaks of the Father as a farmer, who takes care of the vine, pruning it and thereby ensuring that it bears good fruit (see John 15:1 -6)”.
Respect, constancy, the ability to prune to bear fruit are precious messages for the soul”, the Pontiff continued, “which are well learned from the rhythms of nature, from the vines and from production. It involves an infinite number of skills that are only partially transmitted in a technical, “scholastic” manner. These are often instead linked to sharing practical life wisdom, to specific experiences acquired in the field, in a much more profitable way the more we get involved in the human dimension of what we do”.
Respect and humanity are valid in using the earth”, Pope Bergoglio emphasized, “while they are even more decisive in the management of work, protection of people and the consumption of products, as they help mature, at the level of individuals and companies, the ability to "self-transcend, breaking isolated consciousness and self-referentiality”, which “makes caring for others and the environment absolutely possible”, considering “the impact caused by each action and each personal decision outside of oneself” (Encyclical letter Laudato si’, 208). As matter of fact, “genuinely caring for our own lives and our relationships with nature is inseparable from brotherhood, justice and loyalty towards others (ibid., 70)”.
“Dear friends, wine, land, agricultural skills and entrepreneurial activity are gifts from God, and let’s not forget that the Creator has entrusted them to us, to our sensitivity and our honesty, so that we can make them, as the Scripture says, a true source of joy for the “heart of man” (see Ps 104.15), the Pontiff concluded, “and for every man, not just those who have more possibilities. Thank you for choosing to inspire your activity with feelings of harmony, help for the weakest and respect for the Creation, following the example of Francis of Assisi. In him I bless you and wish you, in his style, “peace and goodness”. Thank you”.

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