The parts of the Nure and Chero Valleys that lie in the plain are famous not only for the PDO cured meats but also for the tomato, the true red gold of Piacenza, and Podenzano is the "capital".
This plant, which today is considered a precious food because of its high vitamin content and many other nutrional benefits, came to Europe in the 16th century, when it was introduced from the New World by the Spanish.
For a long time it was considered an ornamental plant and its fruit suspected of being poisonous to humans. However, mysterious excitant and aphrodisiac powers have also been attributed to the tomato and for this reason the alchemists of the 16th and 17th centuries used it to prepare magic potions and filters!
Cultivation of the tomato spread rapidly from Spain all round the Mediterranean. In Italy, especially in the south but not only, it found ideal conditions and flourished so as to become one of the symbols of the Mediterranean diet.
An important fair is held in Podenzano, the “tomato capital”, in July, entirely dedicated to the red gold of the table, with cultural events, conferences, shows, and food and wine stands.