The Luciano Reina company was established in 2016 in Niscemi, a lively town located in southern Sicily. It is led by a very young team, which aims at achieving the perfect balance between local tradition and innovation.
Luciano specialises in the cultivation and processing of typical local products.
The company covers 10 hectares of artichoke and Rapparino tomato crops, a very prestigious cultivar grown in open fields.
"Our purpose is to promote local products and know-how to provide the market with products that are typical of Sicily, yet were obtained by implementing innovative processing and storage techniques."
"I can say we are the only Italian company to process Rapparino tomatoes with this specific method. We also process artichokes without using the traditional cooking phase that affects the original flavour of the product."
Artichokes are processed raw, so the core remains crunchy. The entire process - from monitoring to packaging - is carried out in a single day, just a few hours after harvesting.
All single processes are monitored and checked to obtain exclusive products with a high organoleptic and nutritional value. Traditional methods have been adapted to meet the refined tastes of a more demanding public.
Artichokes are cut by hand and placed in a water and lemon juice solution to prevent them from browning. They are then drained, packaged in glass jars with water, vinegar and salt and then pasteurised.
For what concerns Rapparino tomatoes, the owner reports that they are "sun dried with a small quantity of salt. They are also stretched by hand every day to improve drying. Once ready, we place them in jars with extra-virgin olive oil and basil leaves."
Seasonality is one of the key elements of our products, and it is a guarantee of the excellent quality and freshness of our raw materials. Artichokes are available between October and May and tomatoes are available between April and September.
Our channels are the wholesale markets and direct sales. We mostly sell to the domestic market and 15% of the produce is exported to Luxembourg.
"This year, we experienced a drop in production because of the bad weather. Purple artichokes are the main crop and are also the main source of development for the local economy."
10% of artichokes come from Sicily. Niscemi was in fact recognised as the "Artichoke Capital" of the world and, since 1976, the town pays homage to this product with the "Sagra del Carciofo Violetto di Niscemi", an event which attracts visitors from all over Italy.