Allegrini 2024

Sustainability with science and beauty, according to Brunello Cucinelli and Riccardo Cotarella

The world-famous entrepreneur and stylist and the president of Assoenologi at the “Preview of Vino Nobile” in Montepulciano, one of the Renaissance capitals of Tuscany

The topic of sustainability has been on the agenda in Montepulciano, the territory very closely linked to the wine world, which is the economic driving force of the area and furthermore affects over 70% of the other sectors. Vino Nobile was the first Denomination to use the Equalitas sustainability brand. And, just recently, the Municipality of Poliziano has become a "Sustainable Tourist Destination”, as it has obtained the “GSTC - Global Sustainable Tourism Council” certificate, which it will be receiving in the next few days. The recognition is reserved for organizations that promote sustainability and social responsibility of the tourism system. The topic of sustainability was analyzed in a meeting that took place recently and included the participation of Brunello Cucinelli, world-famous entrepreneur and stylist who is one of the most successful Made in Italy celebrities in the world, as well as a wine producer, and Riccardo Cotarella, president of Assoenologi and one of the most influential voices, for experience and expertise in wine. Anna Scafuri journalist of the Italian television network RAI TV, TG1 news, moderated the conversation.
Beauty and harmony are the values we must pursue to continue to distinguish ourselves in quality. We have the best artisans, the best farmers, the best winemakers. We must, therefore, return to giving more value to the person, because only in this way our businesses will be able to continue to grow and be a model around the world”, said Brunello Cucinelli. He also sent a profound message of trust, indirectly, to the wine world from the height of his entrepreneurial experience throughout the world. The message of beauty and territory that only through respecting nature, people and work, Italy will continue to aim high. “Here, we live perhaps in the most beautiful place in the world, Tuscany and Umbria. Italy represents”, Brunello Cucinelli continued, “0.7% of the overall population, but it is the seventh power in the world. What should we be afraid of? Unemployment is at 7%, the Pandemic brought out the best social State in the world, which for me is Italy. We are a credible Nation on the market, and I think we are experiencing an especially good moment globally. It is fundamental to educate the intelligence of the soul, and when we bring beauty into our work we change quite a lot. Yes, Italy is experiencing an exciting moment”. Brunello Cucinelli also underlined the uniqueness of Italy, its exceptional characteristics that others do not have. Sustainability is a value that must be worked on and achieved every day through one's choices, and wine, which contributes to safeguarding the landscape of a territory, does its part as well.
The topic of sustainability, at the sectorial level, is more and more at the center of attention and is often the source of heated discussions and debates. According to Riccardo Cotarella, who spoke on the eagerly awaited episode of the TV show on RAI 3, “Report”, dedicated to wine and broadcast recently, sustainability cannot work without science. “Natural wine does not exist”, the president of Assoenologi explained, “science is needed because nature cannot think of everything; all professions require a scientific basis”. Riccardo Cotarella focused on the value of Italian wine, giving the example of Tuscan wines produced mostly with the Sangiovese grape vine, therefore Nobile di Montepulciano, Brunello di Montalcino, Chianti Classico, Morellino di Scansano, emphasizing that “each one is completely different from the other because no one has our environmental biodiversity”. At the National level, he continued, “many people have tried to plant our varieties in Australia, in America, but they have never adapted to a climate different from ours. The "French vines" do well everywhere, ours instead is an intertwined and infinite wealth, because the earth & vine bond with people is inseparable. And, we have history. The vine was born in Southern Italy, then spread northwards and around the world. We have the wealth, but we need to know how to communicate better”.
Regarding climate change, the Assoenologi president, Riccardo Cotarella, said, “Italian wine escalated in terms of quality, coincidentally, with climate change between 1995 and 2000. In nine out of ten years we faced adversities in the autumn season, and climate change has made us start harvesting three weeks earlier with grapes that are rich in sugar and tannins, but the change implies a scientific approach. Today, many vineyards are kept like home gardens”. He then returned to the fundamental role of science. “The decrease this year would have been much worse if producers had not intervened using science. We don’t have to be organic and biodynamic when the season doesn’t allow it. Sometimes plants need a doctor to take care of them, just like people. Climate change, when it is well managed, has given us vineyards that we didn’t have before”.

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