The City of Carmagnola and its Fiera Nazionale del Peperone, the National Bell Pepper Fair
Carmagnola is a town of about 29000 inhabitants located 29 kilometres south of Turin. Considered the gateway between the capital of Piemonte, the Langhe and Roero, it is by extension the second largest city in the province and has a great historical, architectural and cultural heritage.
Of absolute interest are the Castle (XII century), the Abbey of Santa Maria Assunta di Casanova (XII century) with church, monastery and crypt, Palazzo Lomellini (1600), Casa Cavassa (1400), the Jewish Ghetto, the Synagogue, many ancient churches and numerous museums including the Ecomuseo della Cultura della Lavorazione della Canapa (the Culture of Hemp Processing).
The first documentary references date back to the year 1000. Between the XII and XVI century it was ruled by the Marquises of Saluzzo who gave a great impulse to trade, but also to cultural and artistic life.
Later the city was disputed between the French and Savoy until 1691, when Vittorio Amedeo II brought it definitively into Savoy orbit.
Since then, the city lost its military role and developed its agricultural vocation, mainly linked to the cultivation and marketing of hemp.
Still today agriculture plays a fundamental role in the local economy and Carmagnola has become famous for the cultivation of bell peppers, which was introduced about a century ago and soon became a valuable crop. Harvested by hand since the end of July in compliance with the strict regulations of the Consortium of Producers, it is appreciated for the unique characteristics of quality and genuineness of its five types: the Quadrato (Square), the Quadrato Allungato (Square Elongated), the Trottola (Spinning Top), the Tumaticot (tomato) and the Corno di Bue (ox horn), the latter included among the Slow Food Presidium and among the showcase of products of the province of Turin.
The first exhibition dedicated to bell peppers dates back to 1949, called in ’59 Sagra del Peperone and recognized in 2010 as a National Level Exhibition.
It became the largest Italian event dedicated to an agricultural product and since 2017 it has been called Fiera Nazionale del Peperone di Carmagnola (National Bell Pepper Fair of Carmagnola).