We are into Katie Parla and Danielle Callegari’s podcast Gola, all about Italian food. Have you listened to it yet? We really enjoy this podcast because many of the episodes get to the heart of the issues most important to us.
For example, this week Katie and Danielle discuss monoculture, agriculture, and culture all relative to hazelnuts in an episode called “Nutella Nightmares.” They talk about how the European union is sponsoring monoculture hazelnut farming endeavors in Italy and how farm necessities don’t always favor farmers or local people.
We especially love when Katie tells her listeners to, instead of eating the conventional stuff, “try a cool-ass gianduja made by a small family business.” Our Marco Colzani Chocolate Hazelnut Spread fits the bill! We are also proud because Katie mentions our hazelnut producer by name when she says, “there are some really wonderful companies based in Piedmont that cultivate in an ethical way, Terra delle Nioccole is one.”
Another episode that hit home with us is Gola’s “Unsavory Business” episode.
In this one Katie and Danielle discuss food businesses, money laundering, and mozzarella fraud, among many other sketchy practices. As Katie says, “we still have this huge privilege in Italy of being able to visit food producers and seeing the land where things are made and talking to the people who are working for the business owners, it’s a luxury in most parts of the world and in Italy.” And then she goes on to say, “let’s face it, produce in all over Italy… the cost of labor is eliminated by enslaving people to harvest produce… everyone who buys and orange in Italy should ask: why is it so cheap?” True! It is not easy to force yourself to ask these tough questions.
When you listen to this episode, be sure to catch the Gustiamo shoutout at minute 19:20 when Katie says, “I do trust certain people to vet the sources of their food… I, as much as I can, eat food that is produced with the shortest supply chain possible… if you are in the USA there are certain food purveyors that know the source of the food, that are only stocking the things that they can certify are not just made in a clean way, but are also made by non-mafia related hands. So like Gustiamo, for example, which has a Bronx based warehouse and does mail order.”
Grazie Katie and Danielle! We do our best.