Monday, 20 September 2021

HNL Round 9 Recap: Hajduk-Dinamo Postponed, Osijek Tops Gorica in Dramatic Finish

September 20, 2021 - The 9th round of the Croatian First League was held from September 17 to 19, 2021. The 'Eternal Derby' between Hajduk and Dinamo at Poljud was postponed due to Dinamo's Europa League schedule, while Osijek's late-winner against Gorica saw the match end 3:2 at City Garden. Here is our HNL Round 9 recap. 

Hr. Dragovoljac v. Rijeka (2:2)

Dragovoljac and Rijeka opened the 9th round in Zagreb on Friday, September 17, 2021, in front of 420 spectators. 

Petković and Majstorović shocked Rijeka with a 2:0 lead by the 36th minute. Ampem got a goal back for Rijeka in the 57th minute for 2:1, and Pavičić equalized 3 minutes later for 2:2. Vuckic's goal was called offside in the final minute of regulation time, so the match ended in a draw. 

 

Dragovoljac is currently in last place with 5 points, while Rijeka is in 1st with 17 points (and one game less).

Slaven Belupo v. Istra 1961 (1:1)

Belupo and Istra met in Koprivnica on Saturday, September 18, 2021. 

The first half went without goals but saw Navarro receive a red card, forcing Istra to play with a man down from the 41st minute. Krstanovic scored a penalty at the start of the second half for the Belupo lead, but Perkovic equalized in the 5th minute of injury time for 1:1. 

 

Belupo is currently in 9th place with 6 points, while Istra is in 8th with 7 (and one game less). 

Šibenik v. Lokomotiva (2:1)

Šibenik and Lokomotiva met on Saturday, September 18, 2021, in Šibenik. 

Marin scored in the 5th minute for the early Šibenik lead, though Dabro scored a penalty in the 28th minute for 1:1 at the half. Marin scored his second goal of the match in the 77th minute for the 2:1 Šibenik win. 

 

Šibenik is currently in 7th place with 10 points, while Lokomotiva is in 6th with 11 (and one game less).

Osijek v. Gorica (3:2)

Osijek and Gorica closed out the 9th round at City Garden Stadium on Sunday, September 19, 2021. 

Kalik gave Gorica the lead in the 29th minute. Daku didn't equalize for Osijek until the 75th. Brodic put Gorica back in the lead 6 minutes later, and Daku equalized again for 2:2 in the 84th minute. Loncar gave Osijek the late-game winner in the 3rd minute of injury time for a final score of 3:2. 

 

Osijek is currently in 2nd place with 17 points, while Gorica is in 5th with 13. 

You can see the full HNL table HERE.  

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Monday, 20 September 2021

VetHealth is Croatian Dermocosmetic Product for Animals Without THC

September the 20th, 2021 - Back during the very warm final days of August this year, oil with CBD (cannabidiol) and CBG (cannabigerol) intended for the treatment of animals was presented. Meet an interesting Croatian dermocosmetic product - VetHealth.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marta Duic writes, the producers are the Istrian veterinarian Igor Bencic and the company Canna Trade from Porec, led by Karlo Kovacic. This oil is a registered Croatian dermocosmetic product, is vegan, laboratory tested, free of gluten and other allergens, and it's even free of THC (psychoactive substance from hemp).

"Given that we've been following research in the field of cannabis and cannabinoids for years now, and we cooperate with companies that engage in that research, it wasn't difficult to determine the direction in which we wanted to go in,'' said project manager Andrea Gudac.

While all are concentrated on the so-called ''full spectrum oil'' whose products contain a hemp extract which then dissolves in the base of another oil (such as that from olives), they opted for what's known as broad spectrum.

“VetHealth is broad spectrum where the exact amount of certain cannabinoids is put into the base to make the composition of the product as reliable as possible. While full spectrum contains up to 0.2 percent THC, vroad spectrum lacks it, meaning that it's actually THC free. VetHealth is currently the only broad spectrum in Croatia, with 8, 16 and 24 percent cannabidiol and cannabigerol.

Igor Bencic participated in the formulation of the product, and he has also participated in the VetHealth project from the very beginning and understood the benefits of cannabinoids properly. Thus, he is the first veterinarian in all of Croatia to introduce broad spectrum into complete therapy in animals,'' explained Gudac.

VetHealth as a product in the distribution part was taken over by Phoenix Pharmacy, one of the largest veterinary wholesalers, and in cooperation with them, they're also educating veterinarians on how best to determine therapies.

Oil n More is a cosmetic part of the story of the manufacturer Canna Trade, more precisely oil with CBD intended for the beauty world. After several well-known brands introduced creams, lotions, toothpastes with hemp, they realised that something that really contains CBD is missing.

“If we need something for an animal's claws, and we need to prevent a problem, then we'll put something out onto the market which does actually help, and not just nurture. In addition to nourishing the claws, it's great for massaging the paws and is effective in combating fungus. Our oil contains exclusively organic and raw materials, and it is produced according to the GMP standard, which means that it is completely safe for human use as well,'' explained Gudac.

They are present here on the Croatian market, and are in negotiations to expand further to Europe - Switzerland, Austria, the Czech Republic and Poland. Both products are made in Croatia, and the raw material is procured exclusively organic and certified by an authorised distributor.

"So far, we aren't able to buy raw materials in Croatia, but we hope that the new regulations will soon allow us to do something like that. The VetHealth project already required a large investment, and the process itself took a year and a half. Oil n More is a newer project and has just seen the light of day, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have big plans for it. That's followed by additional facial care products after eyebrow and eyelash treatment, followed by a nourishing cream.

Work on the new line is an investment that will run through 2021 and 2022, and in addition to product placement, we want to focus on education, and this includes lectures, but also congresses for the veterinary profession,'' stated Andrea Gudac.

For more, follow Made in Croatia.

Monday, 20 September 2021

Pekara Dubravica Boasts 35 Bakeries, Not Considering Exports

September the 20th, 2021 - The popular Pekara Dubravica bakery chain, which came from very humble beginnings, has done excellently despite the coronavirus pandemic and the dire economic consequences it has had on the domestic and global economy.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Darko Bicak writes, over the past several months, we've witnessed a great growth of the bakery/baked goods market across the Republic of Croatia, which has generally been accompanied by a large number of newly opened bakeries from both small businesses and larger bakery chains.

One of the serious players on the market, at least in the area of ​​the City of Zagreb and its surroundings, is Pekara Dubravica, which has a chain of 35 bakeries in Zagreb, Zapresic and Zabok and employs as many as 429 people.

Over more recent days, this family company, headed by Damir, Franjo and Krunoslav Mikelec, has been celebrating its 60th anniversary. From a small business much like any other, the Pekara Dubravica bakery company has become a very well known Croatia brand that annually earns a massive 156 million kuna, which is much as they had in the record 2019, while last year, due to the pandemic, their income dropped significantly.

They state from Pekara Dubravica that large stores have definitely become significant competition due to the very low prices of their baked products that they struggle to compete with.

"Most of these products are frozen and are imported. When we talk about the bread we bake every day and use large amounts of sourdough for it, the quality of our bread is incomparably higher. We don't import any of our baked products that we place in our bakeries, all our products are from our own production. Twenty years ago, we opened our first branches on the market, and at that time there were no retail chains like we have today, nor were there shopping centres like the ones we have today. Markets the place to get together and to shop. Today, that trend has changed drastically and it's very important for retail chains to attract everyday customers, and they do so in part through the very low prices of bread and other baked products,'' they explained from Pekara Dubravica.

Although in the past, some players from this demanding market have embarked on a large export or franchise expansion, Pekara Dubravica says that they are focused on their own branches, they don't have that in mind, and wholesale makes them a very small share of their overall revenue.

“Logistics and operations are very different whether we do retail or wholesale. We've arranged our business in such a way that we don't have large storage capacities and we don't have any plans to export, nor to open franchises or our own branches abroad.

Our production is specific, we have a lot of manual work which takes place in production, as well as finishing in the offices where a large part of our products are baked. Basically only bread and some small pastries are actually baked in production.

We'll continue to keep going in the same direction and we've got no plans to expand to foreign markets,'' they pointed out from this well known Zagreb company. As their main customers are people going to work, school or tourists, the pandemic has dealt them a considerable blow and they admit that 2020 was especially difficult for them.

"In that year, we had a drop in turnover of 21.1 percent and a drop in the number of customers of 28.5 percent. Our number of customers decreased because people worked en masse from home or didn't go to work at all, the schools were closed, there were no tourists and all of this affected our business. At the same time, the earthquake led to a large number of people from the city centre leaving, and this also affected our business. We managed to save jobs, and that was the most important thing for us at that moment,'' they stated from Pekara Dubravica.

They announced that their plan in the upcoming period is to maintain their good level of recognition and insist on product quality, innovation and freshness. For now, they explained, they're going to remain in the wider Zagreb area and are working on opening new bakeries with planned dynamics of 1-2 new ones per year.

For more, follow our business section.

Monday, 20 September 2021

More Than 1.2 Million Rubbish Containers Placed in Croatian Locations

September the 20th, 2021 - 407 Croatian locations (cities and municipalities) received containers for separate waste collection from households that were procured and distributed through the Fund for Environmental Protection and Energy Efficiency recently.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/PD and VL native tim writes, to be more precise, Croatian locations received 1,230,695 various bins and containers of various volumes for the separate collection of paper, plastic, biowaste and other recyclable waste.

The containers were procured as part of a project with a total investment of around 370 million kuna, and the vast majority of this amount was provided through EU funds through the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development.

“Logistically speaking, this was a very demanding project. After the public procurement procedure was carried out and contracts were signed with the selected bidders, a schedule of activities was made and deadlines for their execution were agreed.

In the Environmental Protection Sector, several teams have been formed that have been on the ground almost every day for the past six months and in constant communication with representatives of local governments, utilities and suppliers,'' explained Aleksandra Cilic, pointing out that despite all of the unprecedented challenges the coronavirus pandemic and the earthquake presented, this project has been successfully implemented on time.

She added that they also had the professional support of other sectors and services from within the same fund, which took on a lot of work and without whose help this project couldn't have been successfully implemented.

"Now that almost every household will have the proper containers for separate waste collection, no one will have an alibi or an excuse not to do so," said Cilic.

The rate of separate waste collection from Croatia is encouragingly growing from year to year. According to the data for last year, it amounted to 41 percent, and it is to be expected that the result for this year will be even better with this newly purchased and distributed communal infrastructure.

According to Cilic, the number of Croatian household properly separating their household waste will certainly grow, but education at all levels is crucial - from utility companies engaged in the processes involved to regular citizens.

"This summer, a video of an Italian tourist who wanted to throw his plastic packaging in the designated waste container spread across social media, but after he lifted the lid, he was unpleasantly surprised when he saw that all the waste had ended up being placed in the same bag. Unfortunately, such a reckless practice of some utility companies puts a dampener on all the efforts made to establish a waste management system and it undermines public confidence in the same system,'' stated Cilic.

Regardless of such isolated cases, it is crucial that people collect and dispose of their waste separately because all useful components, especially paper, plastic, glass and bio-waste are all properly recycled or composted. It is therefore necessary to transform a take-use-discard linear economy into a true circular economy, which is why thinking about sustainable circular systems needs to be implemented across all activities and sectors, including policies, products, production processes and business models. Education and public information play a key role in all this, and many Croatian locations now having the proper means should mean there can be no more excuses.

For more, make sure to check out our lifestyle section.

Sunday, 19 September 2021

Associations Say National COVID Team Unjust Towards Night Clubs, Bars

ZAGREB, 19 Sept, 2021 - The Voice of Entrepreneurs and the Night Clubs and Bars Association say it is pointless that night clubs and bars are not allowed to stay open after midnight and that this decision by the national COVID-19 crisis management team is unjust, notably now that almost all of the EU has lifted restrictions on them.

Night clubs and bars have paid the highest price of the pandemic, the two associations said in a press release on Sunday.

The national team is not considering allowing night clubs to stay open without restrictions, provided that COVID rules are complied with, as though they are the only ones to blame for the insufficient vaccination rate in Croatia and rise in infections, the statement said.

The associations said that if night clubs were allowed to operate indoors without restrictions, with the use of COVID certificates, that might encourage young people to get vaccinated.

By ignoring the constitutional right to work, the activity of night clubs and the hundreds of night club owners and their families are being marginalised, the press release said.

Despite the government's job-retention aid and compensation for fixed costs, night club and bar owners cannot avoid closures and bankruptcies, it added.

Every individual must take responsibility for their health, the associations said, adding that by not allowing night clubs and bars to work in order to protect people who refused to get vaccinated, the national COVID team was bringing into question the purpose of vaccination.

They said they had not worked for 18 months and asked Prime Minister Andrej Plenković to try and live nine months without pay.

They told the national team to immediately open night clubs and bars, provided that COVID rules were complied with, or take responsibility for the ruin of the entertainment industry.

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Sunday, 19 September 2021

“Crvena Voda” by Jurica Pavičić Voted Best Int’l Crime Novel in France in 2021

ZAGREB, 19 Sept, 2021 - The French translation of the novel "Crvena Voda" (Red Water) by writer and journalist Jurica Pavičić won the prestigious Grand Prix de Littérature Policière award for best international crime novel in France in 2021.

The Grand Prix de Littérature Policière is one the most prestigious literary awards which has been given since 1948 in two categories: for the best French and the best international crime novel. Some of the past winners of the award for the best international crime novel are Patricia Highsmith, Stanisław Lem, Mary Higgins Clark, Elmore Leonard, P. D. James, Michael Connelly, Ian Rankin, and Cammila Läckberg.

"Crvena Voda" was published in Croatia by Profil, and it was translated into French by Olivier Lannuzel under the title "L'Eau Rouge". The translation was published by the Agullo publishing house, which congratulated Pavičić on an excellent novel and Lannuzel on an excellent translation.

At the festival Quais du Polar in Lyon in July, the novel received the prestigious Le Point du Polar Européen award for the best crime novel by an European author, written in French or translated into French. The novel has recently also won the award for best international crime novel by the French culture monthly magazine Transfuge.

In Croatia, Pavičić's novel received the Ksaver Šandor Gjalski and Fric literary awards.

"Crvena Voda" is the story of a family tragedy and the search for answers, which becomes a story about Croatia and the traumas of its society over three decades through the fates of the main characters. The novel was originally published in 2017, and before being translated into French, it also had a German edition.

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Sunday, 19 September 2021

HUT: Over 1,000 Pupils From Quake-Hit Sisak County Offered Free Seaside Holidays

ZAGREB, 19 Sept, 2021 - The Croatian Tourism Association (HUT) continues implementing its project of offering free seaside holidays for primary and secondary school students from the earthquake-affected areas in Sisak-Moslavina County.

All the 12 hotel companies within HUT, in cooperation with four ministries, decided to provide free holidays on the coast for over 1,000 students and teachers from 13 schools in the quake-hit Sisak-Moslavina County's areas.

At the launch of the scheme in June, 180 pupils from three elementary schools spent the summer holidays in Valamar hotels in Istria.

The implementation of the programme resumed in mid-September for students from the remaining 10 schools covered by the scheme and will last until mid-October.

The free-of-charge stay is provided in the following hotels: Aminess hoteli Novigrad, Plava laguna Poreč, Maistra Rovinj, Arena Hospitality Group Pula, Jadranka Mali Lošinj, Jadran Crikvenica, Hoteli Omišalj, Falkensteiner Zadar, Turisthotel Zadar, Bluesun Hoteli Zagreb, Imperial Riviera Rab and Radisson Blu Resort & Spa Split.

HUT director Veljko Ostojić was quoted as saying that he was glad to see that the successful tourist season could be wrapped up with this charitable action.

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Sunday, 19 September 2021

Croatian Electronic Communications Market Sees Increases in Revenue and Investment

ZAGREB, 19 Sept , 2021 - The Croatian electronic communications market saw a 5% increase in total revenues in the first half of 2021 compared with the same period in 2020, while operators' investments rose by 4%, according to the data provided by the Croatian Regulatory Authority for Network Industries (HAKOM).

Revenues from broadband Internet access increased by 10%, from network rental by 7% and from pay television by 4%.

Investment in fiber optic infrastructure rose by 121%, and the number of connections using this technology went up by 32%. 

In the second quarter of the year the share of high-speed broadband connections of 30 Mbit/s and higher was 49% of the total number of connections. The number of broadband connections of 100 Mbit/s and higher is also increasing, reaching 22% in the total number of connections in the second quarter of 2021.

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Sunday, 19 September 2021

Ombudswoman: Solution to Violence Against Women Lies in Continuous Education

ZAGREB, 19 Sept, 2021 - The key to solving the problem of violence against women lies primarily in the continuous education of those applying laws and regulations, gender equality ombudswoman Višnja Ljubičić has said on the occasion of the National Day of Combating Violence Against Women, observed on 22 September.

She welcomed the latest amendments to the criminal code and the law on protection against domestic violence, which eliminated some key shortcomings in the effective suppression of gender-based violence, but said the key was to keep educating those applying laws and regulations, rather than in frequently changing legislation.

Serious acts of gender-based violence are often tried as misdemeanours and serious cases of sexual, domestic and gender-based violence are recognised too late, when we witness femicide, Ljubičić said a statement.

Since 2015, when it was reinstated into the criminal code, domestic violence has been continuously and significantly increasing while misdemeanour complaints have been continuously decreasing since 2009, she said.

The number of misdemeanour domestic violence complaints dropped from over 18,000 in 2009 to a little over 9,000 in 2020, while the number of criminal complaints surged from 400 to over 4,000.

The conclusion is that, in the long term, our system of combating violence against women and domestic violence deters victims from reporting lighter forms of violence until the situation escalates and enters the sphere of criminal law, when violence can no longer be suffered or hidden as the outcome is often tragic, Ljubičić said.

Such a misdemeanour system is not preventative and does not provide an effective and prompt response to violence, she added.

There is a lack of effective and systematic prevention outside the legal system as well as of investment in resocialisation programmes for perpetrators, she said, adding that prevention boiled down to fining or giving them suspended sentences, instead of the harshest ones.

Ljubičić said such a system of combating gender-based and domestic violence showed its weaknesses especially in crises, such as the ongoing pandemic, adding that the number of crimes of domestic violence jumped 40% from 2019.

According to Interior Ministry figures for this year through 31 August, there were 5,522 registered perpetrators of misdemeanour domestic violence, with men making up 77%, as well s 6,333 victims, with women making up 63.8%. There were also 1,153 registered victims of domestic violence crimes, of whom 86% were women.

Ljubičić said the figures were potentially mildly up from 2020, but that the rise in rapes in the first seven months of 2021 was worrisome.

Everything points to the need to effect the necessary changes in the whole system, notably in the prevention and suppression of violence against women, she added.

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Sunday, 19 September 2021

Three Croatian Municipalities Nominated for UNWTO “Best Tourism Villages” Award

ZAGREB, Sept 19 Sept, 2021 - The municipalities of Kaštelir-Labinci, Motovun and Veliko Trojstvo are the Croatian nominees for the "Best Tourism Villages" award, launched in May this year by the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) as a pilot-project designed to promote the role of rural tourism.

As part of the project, UNWTO members could nominate up to three candidates - villages or municipalities that are initiators of sustainable social, economic and environmental changes in the member countries.

Kaštelir-Labinci and Motovun are municipalities in Istria County and Veliko Trojstvo is a municipality in Bjelovar-Bilogora County.

The UNWTO initiative includes three pillars and two awards. Villages that are exceptional examples of rural tourism destinations and are committed to sustainability in all its forms - economic, social and environmental - will be given "Best Tourism Villages" awards.

Villages that do not fully meet the criteria for this award will be provided with support from the UNWTO and its partners to work on problematic areas.

Also, a network of the best UNWTO tourism villages will be created to provide a platform for the exchange of experience and good practices, learning and creation of new development opportunities.

The purpose of the UNWTO initiative is to strengthen the role of tourism as a positive force for transformation, rural development and community well-being in an effort to reduce regional inequalities and fight depopulation of rural areas.

The winners of the UNWTO awards will be announced during the 24th UNWTO General Assembly session, to be held in Marrakesh, Morocco, on 30 November-3 December.

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