Just a few weeks ago, the pace of life had decelerated significantly in Italy as the languid summer heat became nothing short of an exaggeration. Lack of rainfall for a sustained period of time had taken the shine out of agricultural expectations for this season.
It felt as this was compounded by the socio-economic-political circumstances that are ever present, wherever we live, making it rather hard to make realistic projections for the future.
Sitting in rural Italy, you are acutely aware that the food chain is in considerable crisis because so many lives here are touched by this. At the production end, the squeeze on raw materials, packaging materials, transportation, availability of personnel is unprecedented and cooking oil has come under a particular amount of strain in terms of supply. And then we have a dry year such as this, which naturally leads to smaller yields.
But then the skies begin to change. The rain has fallen (particularly in northern and central Italy) and the groves are in a far better situation than we could ever have anticipated this year.
This just goes to show that we need to be agile, to be flexible to the seasons and indeed to the forecast. We often turn to the comfort of the past in challenging moments, as if looking back somehow allows us to go forwards, but we don’t live in an age where lamenting for yesterday will benefit. Instead, we need to be more receptive to change, more attentive to nature and demand less.
And if we can manage that, then we might all be pleasantly surprised by the forecast.