New label: Mafia Free

From the fields confiscated from the Mafia.
Courtesy Libera Terra

You've seen labels all referring to how a product was sourced (free-range, natural, organic, grass-fed, etc) but have you seen a label touting the destruction of the mob? A new Italian company is doing just that.

Libera Terra of Palermo, Italy is standing up to the mob bosses that have held the area in a grip of fear for decades. The company is producing wine, pasta, beans, and flour on land confiscated from the mafia through a 1995 Italian law (passed with the help of 1 million signatures) that allows land confiscated from convicted mobsters to be used for "socially useful purposes."

As you can imagine, the company has had a few issues with staffing. Locals to the area are terrified to work out in the open, unprotected on land that was the biggest source of pride for former mob members. They've even had to get the military police to force a local contracter to thrash their fields.

But people are noticing their efforts. Products were once low quality, according to a spokesman, but with the support from more people, they are marketing more quality products.

The company now operates four cooperative farms around Sicily (yes, very close to the infamous Corleone) with success. Natural products retailers would be wise to not only consider stocking organic products but socially conscious, mafia-free ones as well.

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