In 1919 young Giuseppe, born into a family of farmers and olive growers in Oneglia, Western Liguria, having just returned from the First World War, decided to begin the business of retailing olive oil. Giuseppe Calvi initially partnered with others but soon decided to start his own company and with his brother Paolo, established the “Fratelli Calvi”. The year was 1921 and so the history of the Calvi Company begins.
Giuseppe Calvi began his small business bottling his olive oil in demijohns and flasks which he sold in the neighboring regions of Piedmont and Lombardy. Very soon, however, he began to pack his oil in cans which he exported to the United States and South America, where the many Italian immigrants were using the olive oil of their beloved homeland.
Our Prices in the 1934 - This list offers a glimpse of an era still relatively recent, but yet so different in consumer habits. As you can see, the oil was sold mainly in demijohns and was sent directly to the families, mostly via train. The containers were all recovered, washed and reused: the waste produced was very little, consumerism was still yet to come.
During the fifties, Giuseppe’s two children, Giovanni (known as Gianni) and Anna Bianca took over the running of the company. The constancy with which they attended to the quality of the product offered earned the trust of the consumer and the respect of the competitors. In the seventies, Gianni and Anna Bianca, introduced ‘Mosto Oro’ for the first time, a monocultivar Taggiasco which today has become the symbol of our company, characterised by its gold wrapping.
In the early Nineties, Giovanni’s eldest son, Gianni junior, entered the firm, freshly graduated from university. In this period the company developed its international market which rapidly came to represent 50% of its turnover. By 2000, ‘Lucinasco’ Riviera Ligure P.D.O., obtained exclusively from the groves of the little municipality of Lucinasco, had joined our range. In 2007, the second son, Luca, also decided to join the family business.
Gianni and Luca’s younger brothers, Marco and Enrico, are occupied in other businesses, but, are nonetheless, sources of advice and encouragement. Our father, Giovanni sadly died in 2009, and not long after, also our aunt Anna Bianca. However, the last ten years, we are pleased to say, has seen the arrival of a new generation of Calvis. Our company continues to develop and change with the last few years being characterized by significant investments in our oil mill and our agricultural company.
And so the story continues...