This morning the first meeting of Park Community subsequent to the settlement of the new president of the Corporation has taken place in the joint room of the province of Bari, with the presence of the president of Alta Murgia National Park, Cesare Veronico, the president of Park Community Francesco Schittulli, the 13 mayors of the towns of the protected area, the representative of Apulia Region Michele Ventricelli and Bari and BAT provinces.
The meeting has been opportunity of dialogue between the Corporations and it took place in a constructive and propositive atmosphere, through the shared intention to relaunch the action of valorization of the resources of Park and the other 450.000 inhabitants of the 13 towns they belong to.
The president of Park Community, Francesco Schittulli, has introduced the meeting by greeting the new president of the corporation, Cesare Veronico, whishing a leadership “in tandem” and confirming the whole availability of the province of Bari to support concretely the common initiatives.
The same warning has been given by the town councillor Michele Ventricelli, who has confirmed the key role of aimed interventions like that one, already started ,of S.A.C (integrated environmental cultural system) carried out by Apulia Region.
The president of Park Cesare Veronico, pointed out his intention to make the Park a open place, invoking the cohesion of the mayors and citizens, in order that the park is a community and not a simple amount of towns and, after gathering the suggestions of the participants, has showed the common intention to carry out concrete initiatives on various levels: from sustainable tourism to the valorization of foodfarming resources, from the safeguard of natural heritage to the attention towards the symbols of the historical memory of the territory.
During the press release, held after the meeting, the first objectives that Park wants to carry out through some specific projects, already set up and in course of realization.
1) THE BRAND OF PARK
The Corporation wants to set up a process of promotion of the products of Park under the aegis of their brand: a territorial emblem which marks in a decisive way the product of Park, by assigning them an immediate recognition of healthiness, correct environmental management and compatibility. The project forecasts the promotion and marketing of products related to the concepts first mentioned: legumes, wheat, barley, baked goods, wine producing products, dairy products, honey, natural herbs, epigean mushrooms and hypogeal tubers.
The regulations concerning some pilot products are already going to be defined.
2. PARTNERSHEEP PROJECT
The wool is nowadays considered a byproduct/special waste if it’s not used for productive purposes and its commercial value is in practice equal to zero. In this sense a sperimental three year project through which all the operative zootechnical enterprises in the Park can confer the wool with a wool selection system and logistic organization that can guarantee at least a proceed of 0.30 cents to the producer, has been approved. The financial commitment of the Corporation is of about 39.000 euros.
3. SAFEGUARD AND VALORIZATIONS OF THE SHEEP OF ALTAMURA
The Corporation will start soon a project with the University of Bari for the conservation and valorization of the sheep of Altamura, endangered autochthonous race of Alta Murgia . The objective is to encrease the stock of articles present in the agro zootechnical enterprises of the Park in order to avoid the extinction of the breed. After a re establishment of optimal numerical conditions, it will be possible to forecast a gradual use of articles for the eventual marketing with the brand of the Park and Slow Food.
4. ADOPTION OF THE SYMBOLS OF PARK
Another project concerning the adoption of some “symbols” of Park is going to be defined, starting from the sheep of Altamura, which forecasts the possibility to adopt an article and to get dairy products through the payment of a reasonable share of adoption, is going to be defined. The project includes an interactive management of the adoption, through a web platform and the possible help of the social networks. The practice can be applied to other symbols of Park: forest species, wildlife, rural artefact of historical and architectural interest, etc.
5. SUSTAINABLE TOURISM
The Corporation intends to become attractor of a qualified, environmentally compatible tourism and not predatory. In this sense a project of organization and valorization of tourist offer connected with landscape, cycling, trekking, hippos, agrozootechnical enterprises, extra hotel and hotel accommodation capacity, quality enogastronomy has been launched. The project is going to conclude an experimental stage in Gravina in Puglia and will be extended, within the current year, to the other local territories of Park. In this way the interested tour operators can contribute to create a integrated tourist offer and activate its own promotional channels with the brand of Park. From this perspective the Environmental and Cultural System (S.A.C.) represents an extraordinary strength considering also the imminent activation of flag project proposed by the Corporation as leader of the system.
6.THE TOWNS OF PARK AND THE PROMOTION OF THE TERRITORY
The Corporation intends to promote the image of Park and its activities in the towns of Park. For this reason, at the end of June Altamura will host , for three days, a series of convention, spectacular, music and gastronomic initiatives that will be held in the old town centre. Later the other towns of Park will be protagonists of the same initiatives, as well as the capital of the region, Bari, in which a specific event for Park with the participation of all the territory of the protected area will be organized.
After the meetings with the other mayors of Park, the possibility to use public structures in order to allocate information points of Park, tour and reception centres, has emerged: in order to manage them it’s necessary to involve the local associationism.