With the approval of the Liquidity decree in April, a tool has been put in place to avoid foreign companies to buy Italian produces at super discounted prices from Italian companies in the agri-food sector. It’s called Golden Power and gives extended special powers to the Government, that will have the power to dictate specific conditions for shareholdings, in addition to being able to express its veto on the adoption of specific corporate resolutions.

The European Commission specifies that the exercise of these prerogatives must always take place impartially, objectively and through criteria made public and be justified by reasons of general interest.

Despite the discrediting action of detractors driven by economic-political interests, the Italian product brings with it the value of appreciation in every corner of the globe, where it always makes the difference.

Moreover, the numbers of the agri-food chain and the industry involved, draw an eloquent picture: one million realities, 740 thousand farms, 70 thousand food industries and 230 thousand points of sale, including hypermarkets (911) supermarkets (21101), food discount stores (1716 ), minimarkets (70081) and other stores (138000). A value from the fields to the shelves of 538 billion euros, 25% of the GDP.

An important path also for Italian consumers (more than a guarantee for foreign admirers), the most food-friendly people in the world, strong in the awareness that goods from our country and bearing 100% Made in Italy certification, acquire an advantage competitive almost automatically against foreign competitors.

According to a survey by the “Imagine GS1 Italy Observatory”, there is a clear correlation between the “Made in Italy” or 100% Italian label and the sales trend of a food product. In fact, it seems that the mere highlighting of the Italian origin of goods, through the use of the tricolor flag, already entails an increase in sales of 0.4 – 0.7%. If you then opt for the more explicit wording “100% Italian”, the jump upwards can be 3.5%. The more evident this brand is, therefore, the higher the shelf performance. According to Coldiretti, 80% of Italians would be willing to shell out up to 20% more to eat “Made in Italy” products. A turnover of billions for those who relaunch the “Made in Italy”, but also for those who imitate it. The notorious and regrettable phenomenon of Italian Sounding, against which ITA0039 is fighting that with its certification protocol in agreement with Coldiretti, with the support of the Ministry of Agricultural Policies, ANRA and with the IFSE international cooking school, protects the truth Made in Italy abroad, with particular reference to the world of catering, at the same time guaranteeing the entire supply chain of the truly Italian product.

The news in the field of protection and safeguard of Made Italy is these days. Another small step forward towards the awareness that it is an industry that cannot afford to be polluted by foreign participatory or proprietary contamination. When we talk about identity we move on a minefield. The value, the credibility, the tradition, the merits of giving life to products and therefore foods at the basis of the most universally recognized healthiest diet: the Mediterranean diet are at stake.

The protection and strategic nature of the agri-food sector has been established until 31 December 2020. These provisions on the special powers of the State (Golden Power), have been the subject of an amendment in which articles 15, 16 and 17 of the Liquidity Decree extend the the scope of the notification obligations relating to the purchase of controlling interests in strategic companies and to resolutions, deeds and transactions regardless of whether this occurs in favor of a party outside the European Union. It is also established that the Prime Minister may also initiate the procedure ex officio for the possible exercise of special powers. Measures well received, since they are read as a manifestation of the political will to pursue the protection of workers in the sector of the entire supply chain and productivity within the national territory.

The thought, however, runs fast at the end of the year, when together with the end-of-season sales it is hoped that the Italian agri-food companies, put to the test by the difficulties of exports due to the pandemic. Let’s hold onto our heritage made of authenticity, ancient values, modern skills, stories written with sweat on lands that give life to the most eco-friendly crops in Europe.