The culture of the artichoke dates as far back as the Phoenicians, and it has always been one of the essential economies in the nation’s agriculture. In the second half of the 18th century, the Sassari nobleman Andrea Manca dell’Arca, in his work “Agricoltura di Sardegna” published in 1780, wrote a paragraph entitled: “The Cardoon and the Artichoke. Propagation. Variety. Cultivation. Use.” There is a demonstration of the existence of the artichoke, “Carciofo Spinoso di Sardegna” in the first decades of the 20th century in the writing of Max Leopold Wagner in “La vita rustica della Sardegna riflessa nella lingua- The Rustic Life of Sardinia as Reflected in the Language,” published in Heidelberg, Germany in 1921. In this important work, Wagner, in the chapter dedicated to field cultivation, speaks of Sardinia’s minor crops and writes “…of the other products from the earth, generally rarely cultivated, there is some cultivation, at least to meet the needs of families, of lentils, beans, peas, pumpkins, tomatoes and artichokes …” From the manuscript of the Sardinian writer Francesco Sonis, on the history and the role of the “Compagnia Barracellare in Sardinia”, comes interesting evidence of the artichoke, “Carciofo spinoso di Sardegna” through insurance taxes. t The producers, since the 1800s have paid these taxes in exchange for protection by the “Barracelli patrols” in the lands where artichokes were grown. Since the beginning of the 20th century, and even today, Sardinian agriculture has seen an important renewal. Production has shifted, for the artichoke as well, from cultivation for personal consumption to specialized production, orientated towards the national and international consumer markets.
The artichoke, Carciofo spinoso di Sardegna, may be eaten raw as pinzimonio, after eliminating the tougher outer leaves. They also make an excellent sauce, or savory pie, or can simply be eaten boiled or raw and dipped in extra virgin olive oil as pinzimonio. There are numerous qualities that encourage the consumption of this vegetable, such as its therapeutic and health benefits due to its salt and vitamin content. It also has nutritional elements that play a considerable role in purifying the system (as a diuretic stimulant, in detoxifying the liver, and lowering blood cholesterol levels).
The labels on the packaging must display: the denomination “Carciofo Spinoso di Sardegna” DOP and the official European Community logo; the category, extra or I; the size; the number of heads; any other indication required by the laws in force. The denomination logo is a stylized design of a globe artichoke humanized with a smile, the head of a vegetable becomes a real head, and the leaves are transformed into open arms stretched out in a welcoming and friendly gesture. The message received is that this product has a sweet taste despite the thorniness of its aspect. The colours are green and purple, typical of the plant, the chosen font is Block Heavy Condensed.