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Italian food, wine depends on migrants, says farmers' group

'Ensure worker rights to foil the Mob'

30 January, 18:06
Italian food, wine depends on migrants, says farmers' group (ANSA) - Rome, January 30 - Italy's best-known cheeses, wines, sauces and olive oils reach the table thanks in large part to immigrant labor, Coldiretti farmers' association made known Thursday.

In 2012, a total of 320,000 laborers from 168 countries made up 25% of total time spent working Italy's fields, vineyards and orchards from north to south, the association said in a report issued along with Catholic charity Caritas' annual immigration report last year. At least 87% of foreign laborers come from Romania, India, Morocco, Albania, Poland, Bulgaria, Tunisia, Slovakia, Macedonia, Senegal, Moldavia, and Ukraine, in descending order.

''The best of Made-in-Italy products only survive thanks to immigrant labor. Foreign workers are fundamental to the country's agricultural economy'', the report said.

''We must ensure legality in order to fight the disturbing influence of organized crime, which humiliates men and their work''.