The Agostini artichoke field, whose family settled on site in 1922, cultivates the typical Artichoke of Montelupone with biological certification, on a hilly terrain facing south in the municipality of Montelupone (MC), periodically replanting the authentic ecotype that has been handed down since the Middle Ages and whose seeds are kept at the germplasm bank of the Marche Region.
The organic agricultural method certified used in the artichoke field, aims to produce healthy and high quality food by not using synthetic chemicals.
It is also proposed to restore the conditions of natural balance, soil fertility and the ideal habitat for flora and fauna, save energy and, last but not least, improve the living conditions of farmers.
The first planting of the artichoke field takes place after deep workings, aeration and shredding of the soil.
The artichoke field is subject to multi-year crop rotation with legumes and green manure crops.
The processes include more weeding followed by tamping and weeding and two thinning in October and February.
The thistles for planting new artichokes come from mother plants of organic agricultural production.
Thistles are transplanted in early autumn and spring.
The artichoke is implanted by planting a seedling for every square meter of land. The duration of production is approximately 45-60 days.
The spontaneous herbs that develop in the artichokes are eliminated through agronomic practices (rotations, associations, mulches, false sowings), mechanical weeding, pyro-weeding, thermo-weeding. Synthetic herbicides are not used, not allowed in biological farming.
Nutrition of plants is ensured with organic fertilizers, manure and green manure from legumes, in pre-planting and pre-production, by supplying the necessary nutrients in variable quantities depending on the type of soil, the density of the plant, the type of administration. No
chemical fertilizers are used.
The defence of the crop is essentially based on prevention, therefore the products that can be used for direct control are only those that can be traced back to the active ingredients authorized in organic farming, the use of which is however subject to the existence of conditions that cause serious economic damage if direct intervention would fail.
Synthetic chemical compounds are not used: insecticides, herbicides, fungicides (pesticides).
Hormonal substances or phytostimulant substances of any type which perform this action for any purpose, are not used.
No ionizing radiation is used for conservative purposes.
Soil disinfection and disinfestation is not practiced.
The collection,which takes place starting from the month of March, is carried out manually, once it has matured, according to the climatic conditions and the seasonal trend.
The control on the conformity of the product with respect to the specification is carried out, in accordance with the provisions of the rules for organic agriculture, by the third certifying agency, after checks and inspections on the agricultural parcels intended for production.
Furthermore, the Agostini artichoke field has been named by the Marche Region and the Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies "farmer keeper of the biological artichoke of Montelupone"Click here for more information.