The economic crisis pushes hundreds of people to seek new horizons outside of Argentina. In the last hours another of those tremendous minimal stories: that of a Mendoza wine producer who, under pressure, he turned his vineyard into firewood, He sold his tractor to go to Italy and said goodbye on Facebook.
Alejandro Palazzo He is 58 years old. He was born in the city of Mendoza, but has fields outside the provincial capital. He was divorced five years ago and suffered recently a fire on his farm. “My numbers were not closing,” explained the producer.
After those troubles, he decided retrace the path who brought his Italian ancestors to Argentina 118 years ago. He already had tickets for March 2020, but the coronavirus pandemic forced him to postpone his plans. And now you will be able to specify them.
“I am a former winegrower descended from Italian immigrants who arrived with a lot of desire to work and dreams to fulfill. Like so many other immigrants, they did of this desert province an oasis“, he recounted in a public letter that was spread on Facebook.
The Mendoza wine producer who will go to Italy.
“Today, with a lot of sadness and tears in my eyes, I am forced to make my vineyard firewood“Palazzo lamented.
In that text he alluded to some inconveniences he suffered on his land, in addition to the lack of financial support to get out of difficulties.
Absences that led him to set up camp and liquidate everything. He even sold the tractor he used on his hectares cultivated with grape and feeling of the future.
Everything except the farm. The land – the two hectares that remained productive after the fire – is left in the care of the family of faithful landlords who accompanied him on the odyssey of producing in the country.
“There our dreams go, effort and joys, from when we could harvest, avoiding the fate of nature (frost and hail) and policies that accompanied the small and medium producer, which allowed us to live off the ground with our people with dignity, toasting for the next year “, continued the producer.
And concluded with a emotional gratitude to the land: “Today I have no choice but to kneel down next to my strains and, shedding tears, say thank you and sorry “.
The reasons for the exodus
Born in the city of Mendoza, in childhood he settled with his family in Alto Verde. With his parents he worked the land on a farm The sleep, 100 kilometers from the capital. Until it could not sustain its operation.
“I contacted a cousin I don’t know. He lives there in Piedmont, where my grandparents had land. Tired of fighting it, the idea is to take a flight, “said Palazzo about his new life, in dialogue with MDZ Radio.
There will continue with his trade and with a small cellar. Also, it will fulfill an old dream.
“I always had the desire to know the land of my grandparents. I started studying Italian. The misfortune of the property, the economic and family aspects made me decide, “Palazzo explained.
Asked about the reasons for the migration, he assured: “Here we should not blame a particular government. there is no agricultural policy“.
“They have laughed at us. This was bullshit, “he said of the broken promises of foreign investment.
“Working people, who come from below, do not deserve this class of politicians,” added Palazzo.
The wine industry goes through years of instability.
A vineyard in Mendoza. Photo: capture.
Consumption and exports grew in 2020 (reaching their peak in the last 12 years). However, the operation in the domestic market is “almost at a loss” and prices are practically frozen (There were two raises authorized last year).
In addition, access to loans and credits is almost prohibitive, as José “Pepe” Zuccardi, current head of the Unión Vitivinícola (UVA), told Clarion in early 2020.
Thus, with insufficient state policies (sector firms acceded to the ATP program), the business becomes up hill. As the case of Palazzo portrays.
“Pain, one puts feeling in it. I cried the day my farm was burned down. I apologize to my strains. The situation overcame me, “summed up the producer from Mendoza.
Another story in a country that expels.