From tomato to pistachio, from chestnut to onion, from pepper to fig: there are 15 products of the land with the protected designation mark celebrated with as many stamps by the Italian Post Office which, with this issue, last November, decided to pay tribute to the treasures of our territory. “It is – explains Franco Maria Ricci, president of the Italian Sommeliers Foundation who devoted a book to these products on the occasion of the release of the stamps – the real wealth of Italy, its mining sector: the variety of its campaigns, its traditions, its identity”. Among the many denominations that make up the heritage of our country, they have been chosen the products of the earth. “Foods of exclusively vegetable origin – adds Franco Maria Ricci – which do not require major transformations by humans”. The fifteen brightly colored stamps, the fruit of the work of the designer Fabiana Del Curatolo, are part of the thematic series “The excellence of the productive and economic system”. The leaflet containing the 15 stamps, worth 0.25 euro each, was printed in 100,000 copies.
While not just dedicated to power, the Production System Excellence Series since 2014, it has been celebrating the anniversaries of more or less famous brands in our food industry. To lead the way was in 2014 a commemorative stamp of 50 years of Nutella, embellished with a jar in the foreground. In the same year, Callipo also received a tribute in which he stood out a can of tuna. The following year, it was the turn of Caffarel gianduiotto, Fernet Branca, Caffè Lavazza, Vignola cherries and truffles. In 2016 stamps dedicated to Vinitaly of Verona, 30 years of Slow Food, Pastificio De Cecco (130 years) and Alto Adige IGP speck, Mattei biscuit factory and Gallo rice.
More recently, in 2019, a stamp signed by the great artist comes out (special issue) by the trans-avant-garde Mimmo Paladino and dedicated to Sannio Falanghina, the European city of wine. In 2020, the 130th anniversary of Pasta Divella is commemorated with a stamp reproducing the company logo on a background of penne rigate, one of the formats that made it famous. The star of a stamp, the same year, is Pellegrino Artusi, the tutelary deity of our gastronomy and our wine, on the occasion of the bicentenary of his birth. In 2020, the centenary of Buton is also celebrated, with the bottle of Vecchia Romagna black label on a philatelic issue, and 160 years of Campari, reproducing the manifesto of the “Spiritello”, the first testimony of the company, created by the pencil of the great illustrator Leonardo Cappiello in 1921. Then it is the turn of the Assolatte, which for its 75 years of life, is celebrated with a stamp by the designer Silvia Isola, and 170 years of activity of the Gancia winery, the company is the protagonist of a stamp that reproduces the “Butterfly Woman”, another of the historic advertising posters signed in 1922 for Gancia again by Cappiello. Same year for the release date of an issue devoted to Modica Chocolate. The sketch is by Claudia Giusto which puts in the background the clock tower of Modica and an artisan who prepares chocolate.
The food also appeared on the stamps of a series dedicated to Made in Italy, in which we find artisanal ice cream in 2006, in 2008 saffron and all’amatriciana spaghetti, in 2009 San Daniele ham, in 2010 the Gentilini biscuit factory and Berlucchi wines. A poker of cheeses (Parmigiano Reggiano, Ragusano, Gorgonzola and mozzarella) is the protagonist of 4 stamps in 2011, and from 2012 to 2016 Docg wines are celebrated. The presence of food has become more intense in our philately with the growing interest in the sector. Curiously, in our research we did not find a stamp dedicated to Italian cuisine par excellence, Pizzaeven if the Neapolitan philatelists remember a postmark, a postmark dedicated by Poste Italiane to the 127 years of the Margherita on June 11, 2016. But there is still time to remedy it.