News & Highlights

Umbra Cuscinetti: now the onions of Cannara have wings!


Foligno, 4th September 2014 

The signing of the Pact of Friendship was held this morning at the Auditorium in San Sebastian and there was the exchange of keys to the cities between Fabrizio Gareggia, Mayor of Cannara and Jim Barrow, a member of the City Council of Walla Walla, Washington State (U.S.A.). This is an important first step that will lead to the signing of the Sister City Partnership between the two cities in the summer of 2015. Present at the ceremony, Antonio Baldaccini, CEO of UmbraGroup and founder and creator of the initiative said, “UmbraGroup holds social development among its founding values and it is in our DNA to care for the territory where we operate. Walla Walla is yet another initiative that moves us in this direction.”

The Baldaccini Family’s interest in the cultivation of onions in Cannara has its roots in the past. Already in 1882, Giulio Baldaccini spoke  of the onion as a “special crop” because it required the use of the spade, careful fertilizing, transplanting from seedbeds to the warehouse and land suitable for irrigation.

The idea of joining the two towns as Sister Cities was born in the mind of Antonio Baldaccini. He grew up and lived in Cannara until he was 20 years old and then went to study and work in the U.S. for 15 years. “When you’re abroad you want to integrate yourself with the local population,” says Antonio, “however, you always have a strong instinct not to forget where you came from.” While Antonio was in Seattle on work assignment at Umbra Cuscinetti Inc. (a subsidiary of Umbra Cuscinetti S.p.A. and an important strategic plant close to its commercial trading partner, The Boeing Company), he discovered that the American capital of onions was nearby in Walla Walla (in eastern Washington). So, he decided to meet the mayor of the city and began to cultivate the mayor’s interest in promoting  Cannara’s onions and traditions overseas. What was the dream of a stubborn entrepreneur and visionary only last year is almost a reality today after the signing of the Pact of Friendship.

Obviously, the main objective of the Sister City relationship is the activation of fruitful exchanges between the two centers aimed at enhancing their respective territories, traditions and know-how in the cultivation of onions. This relationship will make a continuous exchange possible between the youth of Cannara and Walla Walla. This will enable our young people to learn not only English, but also to have an important experience for their training.