The Atlas of Traditional Products of Molise Region is the result of research activity of the Regional Agricultural Development Agency for Molise which, on the Regional Council mandate, has identified the products to be included, according to D. Lgs. n.173/98, in the official lists. The process of creating the atlas has allowed to identify 160 Traditional Products, all recognized with specific decrees of the Ministry of Agricultural and Forestry Policies (MIFAAP).
It is worth insisting on the concept of traditional product. The Legislative Decree n. 173/98 defines traditional food product the one whose production methods in full respect of tradition, have been conducted over a period of at least 25 years. The first list of products, from the year 2000, was supplemented by other types of products not previously identified as well as types already analyzed. The geographical environment of Molise Region, substantially intact, almost natural, allows genuine products worthy of full appreciation: they can be considered products that may contain references in their labelling, to all the official publication lists. The main advantage is the rediscovery of productions that were in danger of extinction. The “Origano of Campochiaro” (CB) for example, and many other products in the atlas, have a value both from a gastronomic point of view and because they represent an historical, social and cultural heritage of the people of Molise.
Each product identified is the fruit of discussions held with organizations operating in the world of production and transformation of agri-products, culture and professional organisations, but also from the received information coming from many municipalities of the regional territory.
The results of the comparison and the reports were carefully examined by the working group set up within the Regional Development Agency. The drafted sheet, elaborated for each product have been read, analysed and discussed. The not approved sheets were amended or deleted, when the product has not been recognised as having the basic qualities of the traditional product namely:
• be the product historically recognised for at least a quarter of a century;
• the product may refer to a high quality resulting from particular characteristics or from the use of special processing techniques.
Each factsheet has been elaborated according to the Ministry of Agricultural and Forestry Policies and reports:
• category of belonging
• product name including synonyms and dialect terms
• area of production
• summary description of the product
• description of methods of processing, preservation and maturing
• materials, specific equipment used for preparation and packaging
• description of processing, storage and curing premises
• evidence that the methods have been applied in a homogeneous way and according to traditional rules for a period of not less than 25 years.
Moreover, for each product is present
• historical background
• bibliographical references
For each category of products present in the ATLAS are described:
• the name of the product with a short description of it;
• area of production;
• product features;
• Health and hygiene aspects;
• processing methods;
• materials and equipment for preparation;
• elements proving traditionality.
Promotion of traditional products
Traditional products are the results of the almost untouched gastronomic heritage of the small piece of land that is Molise Region, a faithful reflection of the Molise Region, which still retains those particularities and peculiarities that have often been lost elsewhere. The region’s landscape, which presents different scenarios, from the olive trees covered hills of lower Molise to the forests of Upper Molise, rich in mushrooms and truffles, has remained almost unchanged over the centuries, it has tried to preserve the diversity of products that has guaranteed the specificity of the territory. But precisely this enormous diversity from country to country has meant that many of traditional products, with the disappearance of the older generations, have been forgotten and that others, with very few exceptions, became popular only in very limited areas. Molise Region, along with ARSARP (Regional Agency for the Agriculture), has been really committed in recent years in the rediscovery and promotion of traditional products, with the elaboration and updating of the ATLAS but also with the participation in various fairs and events, before the COVID-19 emergency came to stop this kind of events, for the promotion of these valuable Molise’s gastronomy products. Not forgetting that traditional products are often unknown outside a restricted area. That is the reason why the Region and the Agency ARSARP tried to be always present, from the small local fair to the large international events such as, for example, BIT in Milan, and the “Salone del Gusto” in Turin, ready with their stands to promote the products of Molise’s land. This is also the context in which the ARSARP has joined the association “City of Flavours”, which aims at integrating the development of the various territorial realities through the valorisation of individual peculiarities, among which gastronomic products have an important role and a prominent place and a promotional function for the entire ‘Molise System’.
To know more about the ATLAS of Molise Region
Read each section of Atlas here: