The province of Segovia already has another product with the Guarantee Brand: El chickpea de Valseca. The Control and Certification Unit of the Agricultural Technology Institute of Castilla y León (ITACYL) has validated the reports and arguments presented by the Prodestur laboratory with which it was justified that the vegetable met all the requirements to obtain the qualification. These were also accompanied by a proposal for use regulation for the brand that has also been ratified. The Garbanzo de Valseca joins other Segovian agricultural products that already have a qualifying figure such as the Garlic of Vallellado or the Judgment of La Granja.
The work carried out by the Prodestur laboratory has been key to achieving the Garbanzo Valseca Guarantee Mark. A process that has been announced today by the President of the Provincial Council, Francisco Vázquez, during an appearance before the media that has also been attended by the deputy of Prodestur, Magdalena Rodríguez; the mayor of Valseca, Alfonso Gil; the president of Segovia Sur, María Cuesta; the president of the Association for the Development of Garbanzo de Valseca, Adolfo Manso; and the head of the Agrarian Section of Prodestur, Ana Escorial.
The president of the Diputación, Francisco Vázquez, has emphasized that obtaining protection figures for foods such as Guarantee Marks is something "very important for the development of the agricultural sector of the province and the promotion and dynamism of our territory through its food products".
"These figures," he added, "entail maintaining close relationships and even agreements signed with the various associations that represent their producers to ensure that the highest quality is maintained, facilitate marketing channels and avoid the intrusion with the arrival of products that do not comply with the necessary technical specifications. "
Path started in 2016
In October of 2016, the road to the brand began with the constitution of the Association for the Development of the chickpea of Valseca. Previously, contact was made with Prodestur to know the possibilities of the product and the process of obtaining a quality figure.
A year later, at 2017, the Association, with the backing of the Valseca City Council, entrusted the Prodestur Agrarian Section with the necessary work to obtain the Valseca Chickpea Guarantee Mark.
In the first place, it prepared the Justificative Report of the Brand, in which the differential character and the market value of the product were reasoned. The document referred to aspects such as the delimitation of the territorial scope, the study of historical references, the characterization of productive practices, the characterization of the Garbanzo de Valseca and its differentiation, the differential nature of the brand within the market, and the economic study and production statistics.
In addition, laboratory technicians drafted and contributed to the report the Regulation of Use of the Guarantee Mark "Garbanzo de Valseca". This document establishes the specific requirements that must be met by the owner of the Mark (Valseca City Council) and the Operators (producers, packers and processors), the Control Plan and the Sanctioning Procedure.
In March of 2018 both documents were presented to ITACYL to obtain the recognition of which Garbanzo de Valseca is worthy, a Guarantee Mark endorsed by the Junta de Castilla y León through the Agrarian Technological Institute.
The 26 of December of 2018 is published the Resolution of the General Director of the Agricultural Technology Institute of Castilla y León in relation to the favorable emission to the Regulation of Use of the Guarantee Mark "Garbanzo de Valseca". Resolution that has been recently notified to the Prodestur Laboratory.
During this process from the Provincial Council and other entities involved has been involved in promotional activities to contribute visibility and recognition to the Brand (Legume Week, Valseca Garbanzo Fair, presence of Valseca Garbanzo at the Salamanca 2018 Fair, etc.) It is expected that in 2019 the harvest of the Garbanzo de Valseca will be labeled.
The President, finally, wanted to congratulate the laboratory of Prodestur for the work done and congratulated the entire town of Valseca "because it sees recognized a long aspiration that I hope will result in a benefit of the agricultural economic fabric of the town" .
For his part, Mayor Alfonso Gil has shown his satisfaction. "At last we have a figure that leaves no doubt about the chickpea from Valseca, which guarantees its traceability, and avoids possible intrusion."
The mayor recalled that by production the chickpea from Valseca is the first quality figure of the province. "We are already working in Madrid, and although our presence has already increased there, we will try to professionalize the distribution channel through different fairs."
Alfonso Gil has aimed to conclude that the achievement of this brand "is a triumph of institutions facing what citizens demand, and an example that institutions are precisely to serve that citizenship."
The president of Segovia Sur, María Cuesta, has pointed out, for her part, that the achievement of the brand is a triumph of the region and of the entire province. "Support differentiation through quality assures profitability," he said.
The leader Segovia Sur, who has been working 21 for years in the province, has been in charge of defraying the 80% of the cost of the reports prepared by Prodestur to achieve the guarantee mark for the chickpea from Valseca; while the remaining 20% has been assumed by the Association for the Development of Garbanzo de Valseca,
Soft as butter
It has always been said that the chickpeas of Valseca are "fat and soft like lard" and this is due, according to the technicians, to the local variety, which has been adapted to the agro-ecological conditions of the area.
Also to the lands where they are grown, classified as "extraordinary" for the optimum development of the crop: medium to heavy texture, with a clay content of 10% to 40%; low carbonate content (less than 10%), no more than 1,5% organic matter and pH moderately basic (between 7,4 and 7,8).
Valseca and the bordering towns of Bernuy de Porreros, Zamarramala, Hontanares de Eresma, Los Huertos, Carbonero de Ahusín, Roda de Eresma, Cabañas de Polendos, Valverde del Majano and Encinillas form the production area of the brand.
At the moment the Association has some listings that include 8 packers and 10 producers, who grow some 80 hectares. In the Segovia province, 232 hectares of this legume are grown with an average yield of 700 kilos per hectare, an 35% produced within the geographical scope delimited by the Brand.
The following steps that will be taken with respect to the Mark will be the registration of the Trademark in the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office, already requested, the Certification of the Regulation by a certifying body authorized by the ITACyL, already in process, and the start of Self-Control.