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12-Oct-17 12:21. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (0)

Porcini crisis

Bad news for Mushroom picking in Italy this year: this season will be the worst since the post war period! According to Coldiretti, mushroom picking lovers can only hope in the arrival of bad weather to have a chance to find them. The record drought of the summer has caused a poor production of mushrooms. The record hot summer has already provoked a poor harvest and prices exceed 35 euros per kilo for the most prestigious porcini. Due to the bad year, there is the risk that mushrooms imported from abroad will be sold as Italian mushrooms.

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12-Oct-17 12:19. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (0)

Italy in pasta labelling conflict with the European Commission

Italy has recently passed two laws to ensure that all food producers label packs of pasta and rice to indicate from which country the ingredients come from. According to the European Commission, these types of “made in” labels undermine the single market by encouraging consumers to buy local. Italy is not alone in this way of thinking; more defensive economic policies have been requested by most European countries. The French President Emmanuel Macron, for example, is in favour of granting countries more leeway to protect workers against the menace of borderless free markets. This strategy has been seen as an attempt to fight anti-EU populists. Italy did not formally notify Brussels of its new origin labels, as the law demands. This was probably because the European Commission usually is very strict about countries introducing laws in the agri-food sector, as it is considered a way of undercutting the single market.

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25-Sep-17 12:24. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (0)

The Italian economy is picking up speed?

Is the Italian economy picking up speed? ISTAT, the national statistics agency stated in its monthly report that the Italian economy is accelerating, driven by the widespread improvement in economic sectors and rising employment. This is quite surprising news if we consider that in the last year, Italy has had the worst performance in the single-currency area countries. Conversely, the gap between Italy and the rest of Europe has been narrowing: ISTAT reported a 4.4% year-on-year increase in industrial output and unemployment rate has fallen 0.4 percentage points during the second quarter of the year to 11.2%. Currently, Italian GDP is growing at 1.5% a year. That is still a little less than the 2.2%, achieved by the euro zone as a whole.

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25-Sep-17 12:21. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (0)

Summer 2017 boom for the Italian Tourist Industry

Summer 2017 hit a boom for the Italian tourism industry and is on its way to being a record year. A further rise in arrivals throughout the autumn has been predicted by the Culture Ministry. According to figures of the Italian hotel trade association Federalberghi and the Cultural Ministry, almost 50 million people spent the night at an Italian hotel during June, July, and August this year. The exact number was 48.3 million. A further three million spent the night at an Airbnb accommodation, a remarkable 20 percent increase compared to last year.

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25-Sep-17 12:19. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (0)

Italy faces one of the smallest wine harvests for 60 years

Italy faces one of the smallest wine harvests for 60 years. Drought, and frost account for the main reasons of this poor wine season. Italian wine body “Assoenologi” estimated that Italian wine production will be down by 25% on last year and coming in at 41.1 million hectolitres. Only the Campania region is likely to have a good production this year. The only consolation is that Italian wine is more than ever in demand abroad and drought might have favoured the good quality of grapes. Production will be less but probably of good quality because of better weather during flowering in several areas, and the long warm summer across much of Europe.

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07-Aug-17 16:31. By Giulia LOmbardo | Comments (0)

The 126th Procession of the Madonna del Carmine and Sagra

The 126th Procession of the Madonna del Carmine and the Sagra were held on Sunday the 16th of July 2017. “The procession went really well”, Peter Bertoncini, the main organiser of the event, told us. This year, the procession fell on the exact feast day of our Lady of Mt Carmel, so one of the floats represented the Madonna with Simon Stock. As it was the 100th anniversary of Fatima, one of the floats was dedicated to Fatima and the themes of the other floats were The Nativity, The fisher of men, Ecce Homo and The Crowning in Heaven.

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07-Aug-17 16:24. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (0)

Italy reclaims number 1 spot on UNESCO World Heritage

Italy is once again the global leader for the number of properties inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list. Last year concern was raised by the lack of Italian sites proposed to be included in the UNESCO World Heritage list, but this year the addition of two new sites strengthened Italy’s first position outdistancing China. Since the 80’s, Italy has been the first country in the world for the number of Unesco world Heritage sites. From 1996 to 1998, 17 new Italian sites were included in the list raising hope in Italy’s cultural growth and international prestige. In 2016, it was the first time since 2000, that there had not been any Italian nomination. This year there are two new sites which include at least 10 small locations. Unesco prefers to protect different small areas sharing history or a natural characteristic, grouping them together instead of listing them separately.

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07-Aug-17 16:21. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (0)

Drop in Italian food and wine exports to the UK

Brexit is already showing its first effects: Italian food exports to the UK saw a 6.8 percent drop compared to the same period last year, while Italian wine exports fell by seven percent. The data were released by Coldiretti, the Italian farmers' association. The figures confirm the fears expressed by Italy's winemakers in the run-up to and aftermath of the Brexit vote in June 2016. Italian wine producers have been particularly hard hit since last year’s UK referendum. Unfavourable exchange rates and increased tax on alcohol have made traditionally good value Italian wine more expensive for British consumers than it has ever been.

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28-Jun-17 17:43. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (0)

Italy to legalise killing of burglars who break in at night?

Italy is in the process of legalising killing burglars who break in at night. The new law could allow citizens to legally kill unarmed burglars who break into their property at night, as part of legitimate defence. Therefore, mind your family relations because someone could take the chance of getting rid of you pretending they thought you were a burglar. Joking apart, concern was raised towards possible pre-meditated murders within families, covered as legitimate defence.

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28-Jun-17 17:41. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (0)

Italy high up the table of complex tax systems

Italians have always complained about heavy taxation. From now on they could complain even more, as apparently Italy has one of the world’s most complex tax systems. The study was carried out by TMF, a global provider of business and compliance services, which has produced a financial complexity index, ranking 94 jurisdictions across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia, the Pacific area and the Americas. TMF Group says it used four weighted complexity parameters, considering the accounting and tax rules and regulations in different jurisdictions, and the risks associated with non-compliance. Turkey is the world’s most difficult country for accounting and tax compliance, followed by Brazil. Turkey is the most complex jurisdiction in which to stay financially compliant because of the extremely high number of tax articles. Italy and Greece are in third and fourth places.

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Lucia Jordan

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