Export file:


  • RIS(for EndNote,Reference Manager,ProCite)
  • BibTex
  • Text


  • Citation Only
  • Citation and Abstract

Wild leafy plants market survey in Sicily: From local culture to food sustainability

1 Department Agriculture, Food and Environment (Di3A), University of Catania, Catania, Italy
2 Agronomist: Research collaborator Di3A, Catania, Italy

This study aimed to evaluate potential changes in habitual and occasional consumers in the use of wild plants in human nutrition. This objective was achieved towards research carried out in a territory rich on biodiversity and agricultural landscapes (wild plants strip), place of origin of many civilizations; that is, in Sicily. The results of a sample of 134 people—supported by discussions with local peddlers—have shown that the interest for human consumption of wild leafy ‘vegetables’ is widespread, so much so that these are included among new food lifestyles. Mainly nutritional aspects related to health, popular tradition and the sustainable perspective determine the value of these vegetables. The importance of preserving and enhancing the local edible flora emerges, if the relative market conditions (season nature of wild leafy plants; food supply chain) are in close synergy with the principles of the circular economy.
  Article Metrics

Keywords food sustainability; environmental sustainability; circular economy; wild leafy plants edible

Citation: Carla Zarbà, Valeria Allegra, Alfonso Silvio Zarbà, Giovanni Zocco. Wild leafy plants market survey in Sicily: From local culture to food sustainability. AIMS Agriculture and Food, 2019, 4(3): 534-546. doi: 10.3934/agrfood.2019.3.534


  • 1. Menéndez-Baceta G, Pardo de Santayana M, Aceituno Mata L, et al. (2017) Trends in wild food plants uses in Gorbeialdea (Basque Country). Appetite 112: 9–16.    
  • 2. Dalli D, Romani S (2011) Il comportamento del consumatore. Acquisti e consumi in una prospettiva di marketing, In: FrancoAngeli, 3 Eds..
  • 3. Montanari M (2005) La fame e l'abbondanza. Storia dell'alimentazione in Europa. Economia Laterza: 270.
  • 4. Zhang X (2007) New approaches on improving the quality and safety of fresh cut fruits and vegetables. Acta Hortic 746: 97–102.
  • 5. Zarbà AS, Muratore F, Allegra V (2017) Sustainable management strategies. The intensive organic horticulture in Sicily. Calitatea-Acces La Succes 18: 478–484.
  • 6. Ranfa A, Maurizi A, Romano B, et al. (2013) The importance of traditional uses and nutraceutical aspects of some edible wild plants in human nutrition: The case of Umbria (central Italy). G Bot Ital 148: 297–306.
  • 7. Quinlan MB, Quinlan RJ (2007) Modernization and medicinal plant knowledge in a Caribbean horticultural village. Med Anthr Quart 21: 169–192.    
  • 8. Regione SICILIA. Available from: http://www.italiapedia.it/.
  • 9. Reyes-García V, Vadez V, Byron E, et al. (2005) Market Economy and the Loss of Folk Knowledge of Plant Uses: Estimates from the Tsimane' of the Bolivian Amazon. Available from: https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/5455/75c7de6953eda358f8978302683cf26727a1.pdf.
  • 10. Branca F (2002) Indirizzi per la coltivazione di specie spontanee di interesse alimentare in Sicilia. In: Etnobotanica nella provincia di Catania. Linguaglossa, Dicembre 2001, SIRACUSA: Nuova Zagara stampa, 55–63.
  • 11. Medail F, Quezel P (2003) Conséquences écologiques possibles des changements c1imatiques sur la flore et la végétation du bassin méditerranéen. Available from: http://www.herbmedit.org/bocconea/16-0397.pdf.
  • 12. Allegra V, Muratore F, Zarbà AS (2016) Can shelf life be considered as a mean to promote vegetable products of sustainable local varieties? Ital J Food Sci 28: 103–106.
  • 13. Zarbà AS, Di Vita G, Allegra V (2013) Strategy development for Mediterranean pot plants: A stakeholder analysis. Calitatea-Acces La Succes 14: 52–58.
  • 14. Lynn R, Kahle (1988) Using the list of values (LOV) to understand consumers. In: Journal of Services Marketing 2: 50–53. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/276060836_Using_the_List_of_Values_LOV_to_Und erstand_Consumers.
  • 15. Allegra V, Bellia C, Zarbà AS (2014) Direct sales as a tool for competitiveness for SMEs in the EU. The case of farms ornamental floriculture and nursery products. Calitatea-Acces La Succes 15: 19–24.
  • 16. Zocco G (2013) Le piante spontanee alimentari dall' autosussistenza al mercato. Available from: https://www.academia.edu/35843784/.
  • 17. Allegra V, Zarbà AS, Muratore G (2012) The post-purchase consumer behaviour, survey in the context of materials for food packaging. Ital J Food Sci XXIV: 160–164.
  • 18. Salvioni C (1995) Aspetti economici della gestione della biodiversità, In: Atti 1 Convegno Nazionale su: Salvaguardia ed Utilizzazione della Biodiversità Genetica: 34–43.
  • 19. Allegra V, Zarbà AS (2018) Economic and environmental sustainability in agriculture: The results generated by biodegradable productive means. Calitatea-Acces La Succes 19: 7–12.


This article has been cited by

  • 1. Carla Zarbà, Gaetano Chinnici, Mario D’Amico, Novel Food: The Impact of Innovation on the Paths of the Traditional Food Chain, Sustainability, 2020, 12, 2, 555, 10.3390/su12020555

Reader Comments

your name: *   your email: *  

© 2019 the Author(s), licensee AIMS Press. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Licese (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0)

Download full text in PDF

Export Citation

Copyright © AIMS Press All Rights Reserved