In the wake of the 2015 Milan Expo, Italian food is back in the international spotlight. An initiative launched by the Italian Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies and the Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Tourism has proclaimed 2018 the National Year of Italian Food.
It’s not merely a question of celebrating the economic success of an industry that reached record export figures in 2017 (40 billion euros), but also one of presenting the deep-rooted link that binds food, territory and cultural identity in Italy.
That is why the next few months will see a string of events that cater to foreign tourists, and more.
State museums have already launched their social network communication campaign (identified by the #annodelciboitaliano hashtag), which focuses on the relationship between art and the world of food and wine. The public is invited to visit over 420 museums and cultural venues, photographing them and sharing their pictures on social networks.
The fascinating landscape of the Italian peninsula is made up of 5,567 small towns. These places, which are home to less than 5,000 residents each, produce 92% of products with protected origins (PDO and PGI), as well as 79% of the finest wines. In order to find these and many other ‘Made in Italy’-labelled specialities throughout the year, Coldiretti (the Italian farmers’ association) has created the Farmers For You app that brings together the best markets, farms and shops, creating a food and wine map that includes over 10,000 sites all over Italy.
A host of events promoting Italian food, wine and culture are planned for the coming months: from the promotion of the Mediterranean Diet to that of the wine of Pantelleria, from the landscapes of the Langhe-Roero hills to the tradition of Neapolitan pizza. Other initiatives will be organised to support the areas that produce Prosecco and pasta all’Amatriciana as candidates for UNESCO status and to relaunch rural areas and local products as tourist attractions, with a particular focus on the fight against food waste.
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