Until the end of the 1940s, the “Aci” (the prefix used to identify the towns surrounding Acireale) provided Catania with excellent fruit and vegetables grown in Mount Etna’s volcanic soil. Among the many vegetables, kohlrabi (Brassica oleracea var. gongylodes) was one of the most sought-after. The kohlrabi bulb has the purple streaks that the mineral-rich Etna soil gives to many of the local vegetables.
The Presidium was established to promote the cultivation of the variety in the historic Etna area and to preserve the remaining vegetable gardens. Large shopping centers and mindless urbanization have led to the paving over of fertile land, leaving little space for agricultural activities around Catania’s outskirts.
Production area: Acireale e Aci S. Antonio, Aci S. Filippo, Aci Catena, Aci Castello and Aci Bonaccorsi Municipalities (province of Catania)
Presidium supported by: Sicily Regional Authority’s Agriculture and Food Department
Seasonality: The kohlrabi is grown in two cycles, and harvested in May and June and again in October and November.
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