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Cheese Factory Mishap Results in Death of Elderly Owner



Clear Facts:

  • Giacomo Chiapparini, an elderly owner of a cheese factory in Bergamo, Italy, died after shelves collapsed, burying him under Grana Padano cheese wheels.
  • Eurostat data shows Italy had 776 workplace fatalities in 2020, with the country reporting more workplace accidents than Spain, France, and Germany.
  • The Chiapparini factory, in operation since 2006, produces approximately 15,000 wheels of Grana Padano cheese annually.

In Bergamo, near Milan, Italy, a shelving malfunction at a cheese factory led to the death of its elderly owner.

Giacomo Chiapparini, believed to be in his 70s, was fatally trapped beneath a deluge of Grana Padano cheese wheels after the shelves holding them collapsed.

The incident occurred on a Sunday evening. Chiapparini had entered the factory to inspect a piece of machinery.

When it became evident that the shelves bearing the immense weight of the cheese wheels had failed, alarmed employees outside the structure promptly alerted emergency services.

Italian daily, Il Messaggero, reported that an initial team of about 20 firefighters was soon reinforced by colleagues from nearby areas.

Following an extensive overnight search, Chiapparini’s body was discovered the next morning, a significant distance of 40 feet from the machinery he intended to examine.

Data from Eurostat, which tracks statistics from European Union member states, indicates that Italy recorded 776 workplace fatalities in 2020.

Additionally, the country experienced 323,683 workplace accidents in that year, surpassing the numbers from Spain, France, and Germany. The gender-specific breakdown shows that 187,579 men and 136,104 women encountered non-fatal workplace injuries.

In comparison, the U.S., with a population almost six times larger than Italy’s, recorded 5,190 work-related fatalities across various industries in 2021.


Having been in operation since 2006, the Chiapparini establishment is a reputable producer of Grana Padano cheese.

According to Corriere Della Sera, the factory has a production capacity of roughly 15,000 cheese wheels annually.


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