Bergamot cultivation provides employment for over 6000 operators in the sector, and represents one of the few agricultural activities not affected by the economic crisis. The quantity of fruit harvested amounts to about 150,000-200,000 quintals a year, providing a total of between 80,000 and 100,000 kilos of essence. Bergamot cultivation has attracted a lot of interest in recent years, and there are many producers who, after successive years of removing their trees, are now beginning to re-graft Bergamots once again. Just in the last five years, the land area given over to Bergamot cultivation is estimated to have increased by about 20%. The Bergamot tree comes into fruit after 5 years, and then continues to bear fruit for about 40 to 50 years. It is most productive after 15 years. To obtain the maximum harvest, the tops of the trees need to be pruned back, allowing the fruit to grow on the lower branches, protected from the summer heat and sharp winds.