Brandishing the European label since 1998, in recognition of the pear’s unique, distinctive qualities, Emilia-Romagna PGI pears, protected by their namesake consortium, are grown in the provinces of Reggio Emilia, Modena, Ferrara, Bologna and Ravenna.
Accounting for 70% of pear cultivation in Italy, the Emilia-Romagna region has every right to call itself the kingdom of Italian pears. Fruit growing in this area has a long, time-honoured history, with particular emphasis on environmentally friendly techniques and concern for consumer health.
Pears are harvested only once they reach the right degree of ripeness, and similarly are sold on the market only once they achieve their optimal level of sugar content.
Renowned for their organoleptic properties and flavour, the PGI pear from Emilia-Romagna boast as many as six different varieties in their midst: the Abate Fetel pear - the most prized of all, which is picked in September and is only grown in the Emilia area - the Conference pear, the Decana del Comizio pear, the Kaiser pear, the Max Red Barlett pear and the Williams pear.
Pears are a highly versatile fruit, with properties that make it a much-loved ingredient by chefs and restaurateurs alike, not just those from Emilia-Romagna.
There are no limits as to how to cook or serve this pear, all it takes is a little imagination: have it as fresh fruit for breakfast, a snack during the day, or a sweet finish to a meal, perhaps with cheese for a classic pairing.
Pear is also the star ingredient in a number of recipes, from appetisers to salads, to pasta dishes to desserts.