What factors play a role in growing a good cantaloupe, is it agronomic management or variety?

Source: Fresh Plaza

The added value of a Cantaloupe melon is measured by its organoleptic characteristics, taste, color and consistency. They might seem to be rather obvious elements of evaluation, but they are precisely those that make the difference along the entire supply chain.

We talked about this aspect in an exclusive interview with Giuseppe Graci, sales manager at the Domenico Graci farm, located in Licata, in the province of Agrigento, Italy, which is one of the areas most specialized in the cultivation of melons.

From left: Ignazio and Giuseppe Graci

“We’ve been growing honeydew melons for quite some time but only in the last couple of years has the SV9790 variety from Seminis made its way to us. It was love at first sight. In 2020 we tested it and since then, we have adopted it permanently.”


“The reasons for our choice are simple and practical. It is a variety with a robust plant and this aspect alone allows us to reduce phytosanitary treatments down to one third compared to those we used to carry out. Its precocity, moreover, is an advantage on the commercial side, which is complemented by an excellent taste, sweetness and fragrance. More than that, the plant is highly productive, and the consistency of the fruit is truly remarkable. Given the same volume, the weight of melon bins is higher, with a higher margin”.

“We are lucky enough to have soils of medium mixture and high conductivity irrigation waters. This latter factor, on the one hand, implies difficulties in the agronomic management, but, on the other hand, it represents an enormous advantage for the netted melon, which results in intense flavor, brighter flesh color and higher brix degree. Our variety, moreover, has an excellent post-harvest shelf-life, which is a guarantee for the distribution sector and an advantage for the final consumer, who can enjoy the product at home”.

Videointerview to Giusepe Graci

Domenico Graci’s farm covers an area of 10 hectares, consisting of 1 hectare of greenhouses, dedicated to tomatoes, melons and courgettes, 7 hectares of polytunnels for the summer transplanting of peppers, courgettes and melons. The remaining part is in open field, planted with artichokes. The company aims at the commercialization of its own cultivated products, in order to maintain a direct relationship with the retailers and wholesalers.

For more information:
Giuseppe Graci
Azienda Agricola Graci Domenico
+39 3205596091