Production Policy Guideline

The processing of the product has remained largely similar to the ancient procedure described by the Latin Columella in "De Re Rustica". At the end of the summer, the figs are harvested and divided into two parts to form an eight, then placed on reed mats where they are made to breathe the sulfur and finally exposed to the sun to dry. After drying, they are placed in the cellar for stripping. At this point, the dried figs have acquired their typical white color, the softness derived from exposure to sulfur and the characteristic mist, that is the sugary layer that covers them, marrying perfectly with the tips of anise inserted in the middle of the peaks. 

For a healthy and quality production

By and large, the manufacturing of the product has remained similar to the ancient method described in “De Re Rustica” by Latin Columella.

For a healthy and quality production, dried figs manufactures got equipped with a policy guideline in which the principal phases of the fig manufacturing are indicated.

Art. 1 - Product denomination
The product denomination is Carmignano’s Dried Fig

Art. 2 - Geographical area
The area of production is represented by the hilly territories in the Municipalities of Carmignano and Poggio a Caiano, in the Province of Prato.

Art. 3 – Varieties
The figs destined to the production of the dried fig of Carmignano belong to the Dottato variety (Ficus carica sativa var. dottato)

Art. 4 – Treatments
The insecticidal treatment with mineral oil or polysulfides, against cochineal is allowed, as well as  spring and autumn treatments with copper minerals, in order to disinfect the wounds due to pruning and leaves falling.

Art. 5 - Collection and figs preparation for drying
Collection is effected manually. Fruits are collected when they are completely mature, that is when they present the characteristic chaps of the skin and they have to show an intact stalk.
Immediately after the collection operations, the longitudinal split of the fruits follows, starting from the stalk, with a cut no bigger than two-thirds. The fruits, partially opened, are vertically collocated on a cane matting (“caniccioni”) and then isolated to be subjected to the action of sulphur vapours (sulphur is lighted up in a crock to release sulphurous anhydride).
The drying can be effected without sulphur vapours, but it has to be declared by the manufacturer in the label. After drying, the caniccioni are put in full sun. At sunset, they are replaced indoors in order to avoid night humidity exposition.

Art. 6 - Conditioning and commercialisation
In addition to sulphur mineral, burnt into the appropriate ceramic containers, the use of other natural or artificial substances for the production, conservation or packaging of  the dried figs  is forbidden. The dried fig from Carmignano shall be commercialised in confections of weight no superior than 1kg.  Only  the manufacturers in their corporate headquarters are allowed to exercise the unpackaged sale. The dried fig cannot be sold before the 29th September, Saint Michael’s Day, patron of Carmignano.

Art. 7 - Organoleptic, physical and chemical features
Shape: the eight shape called “piccia”
Colour: it varies from grey to beige until hazel , according to the duration of the exposition to  sulphur vapours in the first phase of the drying
Taste: they are sweet, delicate, never too sugary, with honey aftertaste
Smell: aromatic, of fresh hay, of almond sugary brittle and fresh fruit
Texture: doughy and soft, sometimes pulpy

Art. 8 – Labelling
The following data have to appear in the label:

  • weight
  • business name of the manufacturer
  • expiry date
  • -sales description (“Carmignano’s Dried Fig”) and brand of the group of manufacturers subscribing to the current policy guideline.

Art. 9 – Supervision
By 29th September (Saint Michael’s Day, patron of Carmignano) each manufacturer states the quantity which has been produced and therefore saleable. Manufacturers shall be subjected to self control procedures expected by law 155/1997, directive legislation framework CE n. 43/1993.
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Producers check the origin of the raw material and the product. The modalities of drying and packaging are checked as well by a specific commission nominated by the manufacturers subscribing to the current profile.

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