We manage 5 hectares of olive groves in Puglia, Italy, partly within the Alta Murgia National Park: over 1,000 olive trees (mainly of the Coratina variety, renowned for its high antioxidant content), together with fruit trees such as cherry, fig and almond trees.
Since May 2016 we take care of these trees, continuing a family tradition. We are a biologist and an agronomist, perhaps for this reason it seemed natural to convert the land to organic farming: we made that decision immediately, but we had a deep desire to go far beyond simple compliance with the regulatory requirements on organic farming.
Selvanuova is a new way of doing agriculture, integrating the organic farming method and the principles of ecology: we increase biodiversity by respecting wild flora, planting oaks and other native trees, installing nest boxes for birds and bats and creating habitat features for wildlife. We are convinced that these measures, besides delivering public goods for taxpayers and consumers, will also help us, over time, strengthening the resiliency of our agro-ecosystem, increasing crop pollination and improving soil fertility.
In this perspective, trees play a fundamental role. We want to plant many trees, in order to create mixed stands of both cultivated and native wild species. Our final goal is to convert all plots of farmland we manage into a ‘Selva nuova’, a new type of forest that provides high and diversified farm products while supporting biodiversity.
We are currently producing extra virgin olive oil and different types of fruit jams.
Our extra virgin olive oil is cold pressed exclusively from olives harvested in our olive groves and processed within 48 hours at a cooperative oil mill. Packaging is also carried out at the mill.
Our jams are produced with fruit harvested in our farm. The processing takes place in an artisan workshop, at low temperature and in vacuum, to better preserve the properties of the fruit, with the addition of a modest amount of unrefined whole cane sugar and fresh lemon juice.
The EU organic farming rules require a three-year conversion period, after which our products will be certified as organic.