Viviana was born in Ferentino, in the Ciociaria area of Lazio. She has always dreamed of bigger things. She studied communication in Perugia, Digital Marketing in Milan, and then - ironically – found love and set down roots in a village even smaller than her own: Poggio San Lorenzo, with 565 inhabitants, in the province of Rieti. Her passion for good food led her to get to know some small farms, after which she decided to create biorticello.it, an e-commerce site selling organic products. In less than two months she managed to put together twenty-two farms. Her site now has a hundred and twenty products online. The selection of farms is the most demanding part of the job. Viviana travels around Italy to personally meet small-scale producers. She tells me of a trip last summer, fifty degrees in a car without air conditioning, in places where even Google Maps gets lost, delays caused by flocks of sheep, unknown dialects and original road directions, “turn right at the next laurel tree, then turn left at the bush”. “And if you don’t remember what a laurel tree looks like?”. Azienda Grillo owes its name to a little girl who, when the land was purchased, found a cricket resting on her finger; Agnese, 73 years old and the owner of five hundred olive trees, tends the land and harvests the olives herself. Marco has re-purchased the land that once belonged to his grandfather. There are experimental olive groves, pasta made with ancient grains, native grapes, black chickpeas, blackberry jam and small ring-shaped wine biscuits. Love, care and innovation: “Biorticello” has its own warehouse, is not simply a “go-between”, and cuts shipping costs. “You can still do business in a small village”, Viviana says. I can imagine her opening a window looking out onto an expanse of olive trees, and getting down to work. “Being here is priceless”. Now she is not trying to escape from small villages, rather she wants to see their value enhanced.
The story has been written by Anna Durickovic Dato, writer.