The greenhouses of Lorenzo Franceschini they smell of chrysanthemums, leucadendrons and "wax flowers". As a boy, in the summer, Lorenzo helped out on his relatives' farms in Montecarlo in the province of Lucca. After high school he enrolled in the Faculty of Agriculture, but realized that "the practice was more interesting than the theory", so he returned to the Lucca countryside, took over already existing greenhouses, innovated them, transforming the old diesel heating into a modern ecological biomass plant, and opened a floricultural company on its own, winning a European tender for farmers under 35.
Franceschini is one of the many young Tuscan members of the coop of Fedagripesca Confcooperative Tuscany. who have chosen to "get their hands dirty" with the earth and work in the midst of nature, setting up new or inherited activities in the sectors of agriculture, livestock, nurseries and fish.
After years, the Tuscan countryside is being repopulated by young entrepreneurs. The pandemic has made us rediscover nature and the fields are increasingly attracting the under 35s who bring an innovative, green, social footprint to companies. However, improvising is not recommended.
“It's not easy” says Franceschini. “Many new realities are appearing in this world, but to take this path you have to be sure of what you are doing, it is not a leap in the dark: planning, preparation, a solid project are needed. We need a technical beam to add to the willpower ”.
Simone of Genoa, 33, grew up in the countryside of Marina di Grosseto, where the family raises dairy cows. After six years as a refrigeration technician in a company, he left his permanent position as an employee to take over the reins of his grandfather and father's company, "out of passion, to continue the family tradition and to be my own entrepreneur", also joining part of the board of directors of Latte Maremma. Since it arrived, "we have made many investments to improve the morphology of the animals, through the advice of a veterinarian and a nutritionist, to make the cows feel good and the better the quality of the product we make: the better they are, the more the milk is good ”he says.
"The campaign attracts more and more young people, who know how to combine practical experience with study, tradition with innovation and technology, creating sustainable activities from a social, environmental and economic point of view" he comments Fabrizio Tistarelli, president of Fedagripesca Confcooperative Toscana.
“The companies in the sector have been able to face the economic crisis caused by the pandemic, for the future we should focus on differentiation of production and new technological solutions, such as online sales, which in some sectors have already proved strategic. We have to invest in preparation and training, passion is not enough. We hope that other young people will undertake an activity in this sector, bringing that added value that raises the quality of products and makes companies more competitive ".