The Fagiolo di Sarconi PGI refers to the fresh or dry bean obtained from the cultivation of the Cannellino and Borlotto varieties, and of 20 local ecotypes deriving from them.
The production area of Fagiolo di Sarconi PGI is within the territory of several municipalities in the Province of Potenza, in the Basilicata region.
Fagiolo di Sarconi PGI is obtained from the following local ecotypes: Fasulo Rosso, Tuvagliedda, Tuvagliedda Marrone, Tuvagliedda Rossa, Verdolino, Ciuoto or Regina, Tabacchino, Munachedda, Nasieddo Viola (Co Mussiddu), Nasieddo Nero, Nasieddo Rosso, Maruchedda, San Michele, San Michele Rosso, Cannellino, Cannellino Rosso, Panzaredda, Riso Bianco (Risone), Riso Giallo and Tondino Bianco. Soils suitable for cultivation are situated 600 m above sea level and should be correctly prepared beforehand. Sowing is carried out by hand or with seeding machines starting from the last ten days of May to mid-June. The beans are hand-picked during summer and the harvesting period can differ depending on the level of ripening: if “green”, the pods are picked without the stem and with the beans still in the making; if “waxy”, when they have a strong and evident colour with stripes; “dry”, after the drying out of the plant and the pod. Only agronomic techniques are used, giving the product its distinctive characteristics.
Appearance and Flavour
Fagiolo di Sarconi PGI can vary in shape, ranging from round-oval to long- cylindrical. The colour of the bean varies: from white for the classic Cannellino to brown for the Tabacchino ecotype; from beige with dark red stripes for the traditional Borlotto to ruby-red for the San Michele Rosso sub-variety. Fagiolo di Sarconi PGI is characterised by its tender flesh, mellow flavour and the short cooking time, which makes it easily digestible.
The bean has long represented the main cultivation and source of income for the farming community in Sarconi. The special nature of the water used for irrigation led to the beans cultivated in this area being a superior quality product, the fame of which, however, remained limited to the local area. Once the farmers of Sarconi were convinced to give up the traditional method of flood irrigation for the newer and more functional method of sprinkling, they were able to concentrate on qualifying and increasing bean production.
Fagiolo di Sarconi PGI can be kept in the fridge for up to four-five days. For centuries beans were a cheap alternative to meat, but today they have been rediscovered as both an ingredient and an element of a healthy and balanced diet. Fagiolo di Sarconi PGI is especially prized for that fact that it cooks quickly. In this way, the beans have a smooth texture and pleasant taste and they are often used in the preparation of pasta, risottos, soups and side dishes, as well as in traditional local dishes and well-known Italian recipes.
The product is marketed as Fagiolo di Sarconi PGI in 20 different local ecotypes. It is sold in fresh pods to shell, in wooden boxes with a capacity of up to 15 kg; in dry granules, in packaging made of fabric, paper or plastic, of 250 or 500 g.
The particularly savoury taste of Fagiolo di Sarconi PGI is not only the result of the climate and sandy alluvial soils that are rich in nitrogen and calcium-free, but also of the quality of the irrigation water, which is light and only slightly alkaline, as well as the distinctive characteristics of the seeds.