Exclusive Talks with
Here we are inside the Molecular Biotechnology Centre of the University of Turin, which is also home to some of the research groups supported by the Molinette Research Foundation.
Today, our discussion will come from two unusually different angles in relation to our territory; and we will be doing it with Luigi Laugeri and with Professor Emilio Hirsh. I’ll start by asking you, Emilio, what the purpose is of the Molinette Foundation having such strong communication links with Turin and Piedmont - both with the Molinette Hospital, with the population as a whole and also with the fabric of public enterprise.
Of course, the Molinette Research Foundation thrives on public donations from those geographically close to us, so as to support our biomedical research both within the Molinette Hospital, as well as in neighbouring research laboratories such as the one where we are now, the laboratory of the University's Centre for Molecular Biotechnology. Our relationship with our region is very intense, because our donors are close to us and we do all we can to respond to regional needs as well. Take for example a situation such as the pandemic we’re living through now – and how important it is to find the right answers in facing up to what is a difficult moment for all of us. We do our best
Talking from a completely different scope and perspective, we know that the De Filippis pasta factory has been rooted in this territory since 1872. So I ask how important this link with tradition is for you, Luigi.
Of course. The De Filippis pasta factory was actually founded in 1872 out of the determination of the Savoy family cook, who opened a laboratory in via Lagrange,39 at number 39 where the historical seat of the company still stands to this day. Then, moving forward in time, the De Filippis family came on board and ran the shop until after the war. The Damilano family arrived in 2008 and carried forward the traditions that had begun over a hundred years earlier - also carrying on innovation in product and manufacturing that had been taking place of years. Finally, over the last year we have encountered this pandemic which has clearly hit the catering sector in a very significant way. So, the De Filippis pasta factory has also had to adapt to the times: it now offers a delivery service - the so-called 'Express' service which brings hot dishes of our kitchens directly to the homes of the people of Turin.
You’ll have heard both our guests mention the particularly memorable situation caused by the pandemic, which has been going on for a year now. In two completely different ways they have been strongly affected by its impact. So I’ll ask Emilio to be a bit more specific about how the Molinette Foundation has been supporting the city during the pandemic and what future projects it will be involved in.
The Foundation’s commitment is right on the frontline. We have a project together with the hospital that has already had a huge impact, because it has enabled the hospital to buy a whole series of personal protection equipment to help doctors fight the virus by remaining isolated: respirators, masks, coveralls et . In a very short time, we were able to raise a very significant amount. This not only demonstrates the important link with the territory, but also how very quickly the Turinese and Piedmontese are capable of responding to an emergency such as a pandemic. At this particular moment, it is obvious that the relationship with the hospital by the Foundation is a special one. The aid of the Foundation is one of the many tools that a hospital can draw on in order to provide better assistance to the public while doing everything possible to limit the tragic impact of the pandemic. There are also many future projects for strengthening technology transfer in the biomedical area: we think that the experience of the emergency has made it clearer to us how important it is to invest in biomedical research and infrastructures, as well as in cutting-edge projects and in better care. I think that’s the Foundation’s dream, but obviously the reality is that it is of great importance for everyone.
Professor Hirsch has expressed moderate, but conscious optimism. So I’ll ask Luigi how optimism about the future can translate into his field. What projects are there in that regard, such as tourism, international trade and some form of recovery in his sector?
Having heard the Professor's words is certainly heartening for us all. Until a year ago, we had a Turin that was full of foreign tourists, a presence that in the course of a year has been annihilated; so it stands to reason that we have gone through a terribly difficult period. In fact, the hope is that as vaccines are distributed, we can regain an important presence in the city. Also remember that in 2021 the ATP finals will in Turin, which will be a world event. We are really expecting an important presence of people – something that we along with other companies would all like to see. We strongly believe in this recovery.
So I’ll ask Emilio why he has chosen to join Exclusive Brands Torino as a charity partner.
Biomedical research is a specialisation of excellence in this territory. Just think that four Nobel Prize winners in medicine came out of Turin, starting with Camillo Dal Golgi at the beginning of the twentieth century through to Rita Levi Montalcini, whom we all remember. In between there were also Salvatore Luria and Renato Dulbecco: they all studied in Turin and then all gave their best working in laboratories abroad. We still try to retain this level of excellence - for the future we want to create a network of initiatives in biomedical research in Turin, our city which has such prestigious and extraordinarily important roots on a global scale. We are launching projects to support research of excellence; surely soon we will see the Foundation committed to supporting the best researchers in the field. We also hope to see these applications in the biotech industry very soon.
I’d also like to ask Luigi why he chose to be part of a network like Exclusive Brands Torino and what advantage there could be for the excellence of his business.
Being part of this network of companies is certainly important for us; as a pasta manufacturer, De Filippis is already part of a network of companies within our group. The Damilano group has a mineral water company, a company that produces quality wine, such as Barolo, a drinks distribution company and, of course, a catering sector. So already within our group we are used to working in synergy within a network; we are certainly qualified in all respects to participate in the EBT network of companies because the participants are leading companies on the Turinese and Piedmontese scene; therefore for the De Filippis pasta company to be counted among its participants- - with its more than one hundred years’ history - is a reason to feel proud.
I thank my two guests, because they have illustrated to us - from two completely different points of view - how synergy with the excellence of the territory is always the most fertile breeding ground for the development and growth of tomorrow. Thanks again.