How a love story inspired this 86-year-old wine company

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Vittorio Marzotto from Santa Margherita USA talks about his family vineyard ahead of National Chianti Day.

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August 31, 2021

3 minutes to read

Opinions expressed by Contractor the contributors are theirs.


Friday September 3 marks National Chianti Day. Vittorio Marzotto from Santa Margherita USA spoke with Jessica Abo to share his family history, the future of the vineyard and the business, and his advice for other family farms.

Jessica Abo: Take us back to the beginning. How did a love story inspire your family’s business?

Vittorio Marzotto: The family history began in 1935, when my great-grandfather Gaetano Marzotto dreamed of nature, people and technology working in synergy and his dream came true when he started to revitalize an abandoned land in the Venetian countryside which he chose as a productive soil. for agriculture. It needed to be picked up, so he put a lot of effort into it, and he succeeded. Such an ambitious place could only have one name, that of his wife, Margherita, hence the name of Santa Margherita.

How have social responsibility and sustainability played a role in your family business over the years?

Gaetano’s vision that we are pursuing today was to respect the land for the quality of the product that goes into the glass and the people who work the land and have a passion for it. In short, he was very committed to providing a livelihood for his employees and contributing to their quality of life by building a hospital, school and vacation homes where employees could take their families to relax and enjoy.

From an environmental standpoint, we were operating with sustainable practices even before the term was created. We have done things like reducing the level of chemicals in the vineyards and reducing the CO2 footprint throughout glass production, from the container of the bottle to the bottle of wine itself. He built a factory, a glass producer, a stone’s throw from the cellar.

How do you think people, nature and technology play a role in the business 86 years later?

The tradition of Santa Margherita has always been at the forefront of winemaking, but today we really want to become a pioneer in energy saving with the reduction of carbon emissions, as well as the preservation of water. . Solar panels allow the cellar to be self-sufficient in energy. We have also built a biomass power plant that recycles renewable energy from agricultural sediments. We have a lot of practices in our winemaking: no chemicals, no animal agents. We have techniques for conserving water in the field, in the vineyards and in the cellar.

Your family decided to found the National Chianti Day. What did this process involve?

First you need to register for the National Day calendar and write an essay explaining why you would like to have a National Day. It is very rare to have a seat at the table. Only 15 days are open each year. We were fortunate last year to have approved National Chianti Day. For the first year, and now every year, on the first Friday in September, we will be celebrating National Chianti Day.

You have several members of your family who work for the company. What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs who run family businesses?

My advice is to communicate with each other as much as you can. My family’s passion, dedication, time and effort to work together are the essential ingredients of our success. We never forget what our great-grandfather told us about the vision and principles that we must commit to and maintain today.


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