Co-Operatives: Italy

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

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Italy in Italy, the cantina sociale is no less important, accounting for about 50% of the country’s production. eu policies have favoured co-operatives in the past, often as a result of wily or politically well-connected operators of them. As EU subsidies dwindle, however, the quality of the wine, and the ability to run the co-operative on a commercial basis, becomes increasingly important. One of the most respected Italian co-operatives, in the far north west, is the Produttori del barbaresco, whose origins are 19th century. The influence of the cantina sociale, or Kellereigenossenschaft in German, is particularly strong in trentino-alto adige, where Cavit, incorporating eleven wineries and 4,500 members, is the region’s biggest producer. In veneto, co-operatives have traditionally been responsible for the bulk of production, particularly in Verona, where a large number of producers of Soave and Valpolicella either buy, or supplement their production through purchases, from the local co-op.