No to the PIT

The Consortia for the Protection of Wines from Tuscany in the face of the Piano di Indirizzo Territoriale, i.e., the Plan of Territorial Direction

 

Florence, 29th September 2014 – This morning, the main Tuscan Consortia of vine-growers and wine-makers presented some common Observations to the Landscape Plan adopted by the Regional Council on 2nd July last.

 

Over the long history of the Tuscan Consortia, such unity of intents has rarely been achieved, bearing witness to the fact that the entire Tuscan vine-growing and wine-making sector, without distinction, shares the same assessment of the Landscape Plan, and the same concerns.

 

We acknowledge without hesitation that the Plan contains numerous positive developments, especially with regard to the focus placed on soil consumption. Nonetheless, we can only reiterate our negative judgement on the aspects more closely related to agriculture, vine-growing and wine-making and, indeed, we are convinced that, should it be approved as it was proposed, this Plan would set Tuscan agriculture back by decades, producing all but irreversible damage to the economy, employment and even to the environment of a large portion of our rural territory. We are all aware that the lack of a competitive economy also entails the deterioration of the territory, as the resources essential to its care and maintenance would become sparse.

 

Over the past days, we defined this Landscape Plan as “anachronistic and wrong”, and our judgement has not changed in the meantime.

 

It is anachronistic in its theoretical assumptions and practical objectives, as it aims at the reestablishment of an agrarian landscape that no longer exists, having been superseded by the history of the past century. In 2014, one cannot seriously think – as proposed in some parts of the Plan – to reinstate on our hills an “agricultural, forest and pastoral” landscape when the social structure that supported it disappeared decades ago. In many respects, this Plan does not merely focus – as it should – on the landscape and its protection in a dynamic context, but rather goes on to indicate the kind of economy that should be practiced, without pondering on its feasibility end effects.

 

It is wrong in its regulatory setup, not only because it is complex and vast beyond any reasonable measure, but also because it is inconsistent and contradictory. The reader immediately realises that there is no clear distinction between what is prescribed and what is a mere methodological indication, granting immense discretionary powers to the civil servants who are called to interpret it. In a country unable to recover from the ongoing crisis also because of its bureaucracy, this Plan paves the road to an increase in the bureaucratic burdens imposed on enterprises.

 

Finally, this plan has a deeply “anachronistic and wrong” view on modern viticulture, that same viticulture that has accompanied and sustained the social and economic rebirth of our rural areas. If Tuscan wine has attained a position of absolute excellence worldwide, we owe it to the huge investments that wine producers have made in equipment and technology, and to the passionate work and expertise of tens of thousands of insiders. Throughout the Plan, and in particular in the datasheets referring to individual territories, specialised viticulture is described as a most critical issue insofar as landscape management is concerned, going as far as asking to prevent “unwarranted expansion of the vine-growing culture”.

 

Vine-growers are not against the Plan because they are intolerant of regulations, they are rather against “this” specific Plan, because of the way it has been conceived and formulated. The Tuscan landscape is a fundamental asset for vine-growers as it serves as a formidable introduction at world level of our culture, our lifestyle and our products. The excellence of Tuscan wine is one with the excellence of the landscape; its protection is therefore an unalienable value. For this reason, it would indeed have been desirable to involve the vine-growers and wine-makers in the drafting of the Landscape Plan, with the aim of defining few, clear regulations. The landscape cannot be protected by transferring costs and burdens on farmers alone, imposing obligations and bureaucracy on them.

 

For the foregoing reasons, and because we truly believe in the involvement in governmental decision-making, our Observations extend beyond a mere exposition of the errors and inconsistencies, proposing a complete revision of the philosophy and approach of the Plan.

 

The Tuscan landscape is a value shared by both citizens and enterprises. Indeed, the public protection policies must be equally shared. On the Regional Council and Governor Rossi, we wish to impress what we have previously stated: think better of it, before it is too late.

 

 

List of signatory Consortia

 

Consortium of Chianti Colli Fiorentini - tel. 055 3245750

Consortium of Chianti Colli Senesi - tel. 0577 43186

Consortium of Chianti Rufina - tel. 055 8399944

Consortium of Brunello di Montalcino Wine – tel. 0577 848246

Consortium of Chianti Classico Wine - tel. 055 822851

Consortium of Nobile di Montepulciano Wine- tel. 0578 757812

Consortium of the San Gimignano Denomination - Elisabetta Borgonovi tel. 331 6550555

Consortium for the Protection of Carmignano Wines - tel. 055 8712468

Consortium for the Protection of Bolgheri D.O.C. - tel. 0565 749600

Consortium for the Protection of Morellino di Scansano Wine - tel. 0564.507710

Consortium of Valdarno di Sopra D.O.C. - tel. 348 3885047

Consortium of Cortona Wines - tel. 0575 603793

Consortium of Tuscan Valdichiana Wines - tel. 0575 27229

Consortium of Chianti Wine – tel. 055 333600

Consortium of Grance Senesi D.O.C. Wine - tel. 0744 750746

Consortium of Orcia Wine - tel. 0577 887471

Agency for the Protection of Wines from Tuscany - tel. 055 2337134