Typical Italian products: PDO Bologna potato

Typical Italian products: PDO Bologna potato

Production area

Denomination recognition: 2009

It must be produced exclusively by farms, conditioned and packaged by companies all located in the province of Bologna.


The cultivation of the Bologna potato has been widespread in the Bolognese plain since the seventeenth century and it is thanks to the particular environment typical of the production area, determined by the integration between soil and climate, that the "Bologna potato" is characterized by being able to develop characteristics physical such as the texture and grain size of the pulp, and organoleptic properties such as particular smell and taste, which determine its specificity and quality. Among the multiple factors that contribute to creating this binomial territory - "Bologna potato", a predominant role is played by the producers, who over the years have developed step by step an almost precision cultivation technique, building increasingly efficient equipment. and respectful of the product, preserving it with avant-garde techniques and commercial structures which then proceeded to enhance it in its product and quality aspects.

PDO Bologna potato

Production regulations - PDO Bologna potato

Article 1
The protected designation of origin (D.O.P.) "Potato di Bologna" is reserved for the potato that meets the requirements set out in the following production specification.
The D.O.P., "Potato of Bologna", identifies the tuber that responds by physical, organoleptic characteristics and production area to what is described in the Disciplinary below.

Article 2
The varieties that can be used must be due to their morphological and organoleptic characteristics to the traditional typology cultivated in the province of Bologna, that is the Primura variety, therefore with oval-shaped tubers - elongated and with a good dry matter content. The tubers must be equipped with a particularly conservable pulp, tending to be not floury, suitable for many culinary uses such as fried, steam and oven cooking.
From a morphological point of view, the plants must have a not excessive vegetative development, with steliprocombents of normal thickness, the leaves must be large, light green in color and show a medium flowering. The earliness of ripening varies from early to medium-late, depending on the variety, the soil characteristics of the Bolognese environment and climatic variations.
The tubers must have a predominantly oval-elongated, regular shape, with consistent pulp, varying in color from white to straw yellow, smooth skin and with the traditional light shade, a characteristic provided by the composition of the cultivation soils.
From the organoleptic-qualitative point of view, the typology of the Bologna potato has traditionally an average content of dry substance and a good consistency of the pulp, which makes it particularly suitable for all uses, thanks also to its good presence on the plate.
The typical but not too pronounced taste and its good shelf life, obtained thanks to the production in suitable lands and the application of agronomic techniques linked to tradition, still make it the optimal reference for the market.

Article 3
To use the PDO, the potato must be produced exclusively by farms, conditioned and packaged by companies all located in the province of Bologna, in order to guarantee the
control and traceability.

Article 4
The environmental conditions (soil and climate) for the production of the PDO "Bologna potato" must be suitable to provide adequate support for the development of tubers with the characteristics listed below.
Soil: must be fertile, deep, with organic substance and with a good draining capacity.
Since the early 1800s, the particular characteristics of the soil described in the work of Contri (1817) link the potato to the Bolognese territory. In fact, he describes how the potato prefers the "low bottoms, already free from the waters and raised by the floods of the rivers", that is the reclamation soils typical of the Bologna area.
The alterations that occurred over time, on this soil, then gave rise to flat areas, consisting of alluvial sediments transported and deposited by the rivers and streams originating in the Apennines and still active today. Various chemical, physical and biological processes have contributed to the medium-fine texture pedological formation, from the alkaline pH, with good endowment of the main nutritional elements for the potato, such as potassium which is particularly present. You can also observe the characteristic appoderation of the territory, formed by small-medium sized plots, with orientation according to the line of maximum slope useful for a natural dripping of the waters. Also in the early nineteenth century, Filippo Re in his work "Essay on the cultivation and uses of the earth pommel" describes the first attempts to preserve the tubers during the winter, placing them in dry environments, wrapped with layers of dry leaves or hay , or straw, which preceded the development of current storage techniques, originating and typical of the Bologna area. It should also not be forgotten that Bignami, in 1773, reported in his work "LePatate" as such tuber, had already entered the common use in the kitchen to make bread, pancakes, ibignè and tagliatelle, certainly typical foods of the Bolognese territory.
From the morphological point of view, the soils where the cultivation takes place, are mostly flat but also include a hilly area, while for the soil aspect, referred to the composition, as established by the Soil Map of the Emilia Romagna Region, they can be distinguished in: "San Martino soils", "Ascension soils", "Medicine soils", "Massumatico soils", "Cicoli soils", "Galisano soils" and "San Giorgio soils", therefore attributable to characteristics of good depth and good drainage, with pH moderately alkaline and with the presence of organic matter. The texture is slightly variable between them, but tends to be thin on the surface and media neglected on more backgrounds.
From the hydrological point of view, the territory is well supplied for the presence of natural streams and rivers (Idice, Reno, Gaiana, Fossatone, Quaderna, Rido, Sillaro, Samoggia, Savena, etc.) and also for the presence of specially constructed artificial channels ( Emiliano - Romagnolo canal), to supply water to crops in the spring - summer period, which is the one most in demand.
Climate: the Bolognese plain is characterized by warm spring temperatures starting from the end of February - beginning of March, ideal for guaranteeing a suitable sprouting of the tubers sown in this period. During the stage of maximum vegetative development, concentrated in the period from April to June, temperatures easily reach 25-28 ° C, favoring the formation and growth of tubers and regular maturation. The rainfall distributed during the year favors cultivation in the first vegetative growth and tuberification phase; they also guarantee the replenishment of the water table and the soil preparation preparatory to the seeding of the potato.

Article 5
Cultivation technique: it is fundamentally based on the practices present in the territory found at the beginning of the cultivation of the potato, such as the preparation of the soil, with deep workings to favor a good development of the root system and an effective draining of excess water.
The first operation consists in the preparation of the soil with the removal, carried out in the autumn preceding the sowing, which allows the winter atmospheric agents, such as rain and frost, to act by breaking up the coarsest soil clods and creating a suitable texture to accommodate the tuberoseme.
This processing significantly affects the development and shape of the tubers; infact the tuberification of the stolons, occurs regularly and at the right depth, when the seeding plan and the heap of soil that covers the tuber-seed are not compact, sufficiently soft and airy. Furthermore, the production of tubers will be more regular by limiting the presence of deformed tubers, also facilitating mechanical harvesting operations with consequent reduction of mechanical damage to the tubers.
For sowing, the use of certified seed tubers, both whole and cut, is mandatory, preparation for sowing requires pre-sprouting, an operation that allows seed tubers to develop more early and resistant once they are placed in the field. During this phase, the tubers stay in an environment not subject to frost, in the presence of diffused light, so that a shoot of a few millimeters in length develops, with a squat and robust shape. Once sowing has taken place, this practice guarantees a regular sprouting, free of failures and a certain earliness in the production, which is still a sought-after feature for most of the production of hills in the Bologna area.
As regards crop rotation, single succession is prohibited and the return of the potato to the same plot of land after two years of other crops is allowed.
Fertilization is carried out taking into account the needs of the crop; it must provide the most suitable nutritional elements, such as nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, so that it is possible to obtain optimal production both from a quantitative and qualitative point of view. The maximum production is 60 tons / ha.
The cultivation technique is completed with fertilization and defense, applying the provisions of the regulations contained in the regulations of the Emilia Romagna Region.
Irrigation: the typical autumn-spring rainfall and the intrinsic composition of the lands of the Bolognese plains integrate perfectly with the network of natural and artificial creeks, used by producers to provide regular irrigation during cultivation, avoiding waste and enhancing the quality characteristics , such as the homogeneous commercial size, the dry substance content and the culinary attitude of the tubers themselves.
Harvesting must be carried out when the product is fully physiological, i.e. when the straw does not tear at the pressure exerted by rubbing it with your fingers, as this allows you to intervene with potato-harvesting machines that deposit the tubers in suitable containers for transport to the collection facilities.
The conservation of the potatoes takes place in bins in cold-storage cells at controlled temperature, between 4 and 7 ° C, protected from light.
The post-harvest treatments provided for by current legislation are allowed.

Article 6
The control for the application of the provisions of the following specification is carried out by an authorized body, in accordance with the provisions of art. 10 of the Reg. (CEE) n. 2081 of 07/14/92.

Article 7
The D.O.P. "Potato di Bologna" must be identifiable by physical aspect, eorganoleptic chemical component, by the following parameters:
a) mainly oval-shaped tubers - elongated, rather regular, with the presence of superficial and not very pronounced buds (eyes);
b) smooth skin, intact and free of external defects that alter its characteristics;
c) homogeneous tuber size between 40 and 75 mm;
d) pulp of variable color from white to straw yellow;
e) shelf life no later than 10 months from the date of collection.
From a chemical point of view, the average composition per 100 g of edible part is divided as follows:
- Water from 70.0 to 85.0%
- Proteins from 1.8 to 2.2%
- Fat from 0.09 to 1.12%
- Carbohydrates from 13.5 to 17.0%
- Fibers from 2.2 to 2.7%
- Minerals (sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium, manganese, iron, cobalt, copper, zinc, nickel, chromium, phosphorus, chlorine, fluorine, iodine, boron, selenium) from 1.0 to 1.2%
- Vitamins from 0.05 to 0.1%.
The "Bologna Potato" when released for consumption must have the following characteristics:
a) homogeneity of size of the tubers: the size of the tubers (radial diameter) measured with a square mesh size cannot be less than 40 mm and greater than 75 mm.
The difference between minimum and maximum diameter cannot exceed 30 mm.
Tolerances are set as follows:
1) minimum (40 mm) and maximum (75 mm) diameter: 3% on the number of tubers in the sample;
2) homogeneity: 15% on the number of tubers;
b) not present as a percentage of the total weight:
1) tubers with evident external defects (deformed, immature, peeled, sprouted, withered, green, scabied, or with other parasitic alterations localized on the skin): 10%
2) tubers with subcutaneous spots of traumatic origin (black spots) and internal pulp alterations (hollow heart, ferrugin spotting, vitrescence, etc.): 10%
3) tubers with external damage (wounds, cuts): 5%
4) sectioned tubers with rotting in the pulp: 0%
The sum of the defects inherent in the alterations of the characteristics of the tubers cannot exceed 15% by weight, excluding the percentage inherent in the homogeneity of the calibres and the size.

Article 8.
The marketing of the "Bologna potato" for the purpose of release for consumption must be carried out using the following packs:
- bags of 4 kg, 5 kg, 10 kg and 25 kg with central or printed band of at least 10 cm.
- 0.5 kg, 1 kg, 1.5 kg, 2 kg and 2.5 kg nets.
- packaging: vertbag, quickbag, girsac and bag of 0.5 kg, 1 kg, 1.5 kg, 2 kg, 2.5 kg, 5 kg.
- tray or tray with weight of 0.5 kg, 0.750 kg, 1 kg.
- carton and baskets of 10 kg, 12.5 kg, 15 kg, 20 kg and 25 kg.
In all cases, the packages must contain a clean product and be sealed in such a way as to prevent the contents from being extracted without breaking the package itself.
On the packaging must be indicated the words: "Potato di Bologna" followed by the phrase "D.O.P." and with the logo specified as follows: a stylized image of potato crossed diagonally by two bands of red and blue, whose colors are as follows:
- the yellow of the stylized potato Pantone Yellow 116 C, four-color process 0/20/100/0;
- the red of the first Pantone Warm Red C oblique band, four-color, 0/100/100/0;
- the blue of the second oblique band Pantone blue 286 C, four-color, 100/70/0/0;
The typeface used to compose any text appears to be the Avenue in the versions
clear and bold.
The trademark cannot be reproduced on packs in dimensions of less than 20 mm of base and in any case the PDO "Potato di Bologna" must be reported in larger dimensions than any other labeling indicated on the label.
In addition, the following must be indicated:
- name or business name and address or headquarters of the individual and / or associated producer and / or packager,
- net weight at the origin,
- variety,
as well as any complementary and accessory indications which are not laudatory and not suitable for misleading the consumer about the nature and characteristics of the product.
The packaging must bear on the label, in clear and legible characters, the Community graphic symbol and related mentions, in accordance with the specifications of Reg. (EC) 1726/98 and subsequent amendments.
The term "Protected Designation of Origin" can be repeated in another part of the package or on the label also in the form of an acronym "D.O.P.".

Article 9.
"Marketing of Processed Products"
The products for which the D.O.P. is used "Bologna Potato", also following processing and transformation processes, can be released for consumption in packs bearing the reference to said denomination without the affixing of the Community logo, provided that:
- the product with a protected designation, certified as such, constitutes the exclusive component of the product category;
- users of the protected designation product are authorized by the owners of the intellectual property right conferred by the registration of the D.O.P., gathered in a Consortium in charge of protection by the Ministry of Agricultural and Forestry Policies. The same Consortium in charge will also register them in special registers and supervise the correct use of the protected name. In the absence of a designated consortium for protection, the aforementioned functions will be carried out by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry as a national authority prepared to implement the Regulation (EEC) 2081/92;
- the non-exclusive use of the protected name only allows its reference, according to current legislation, among the ingredients of the product that contains it, or in which it is transformed or processed.

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