Wednesday, 17 August 2022

Croatia Registers Record-High Inflation at 12.3%

ZAGREB, 17 August, 2022 - Consumer prices in Croatia in July were 12.3% higher on the year, which is the highest inflation in the country since the national statistical office (DZS) has been keeping data, mainly due to higher fuel and food prices.

Month on month, the prices of goods and services for personal consumption were 0.4% higher, the DZS said on Wednesday.

In June, the year-on-year price increase was 12.1%. July was the third month in a row in which consumer prices saw a two-digit increase.

In the first seven months of 2022, the consumer prices index increased by 9.1% year on year, Raiffeisenbank Austria analysts said in a comment on the DZS data.

Broken down by the main divisions of the ECOICOP classification, at the annual level, the highest increase on average in consumer prices was recorded in Transport, of 19.2%, followed by Food and non-alcoholic beverages, of 18.3%, Restaurants and hotels, of 16.8%, Furnishings, household equipment, and routine household maintenance, of 14.1%, Recreation and culture, of 10.0%, Housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels, of 9.7%, Miscellaneous goods and services, of 7% and Clothing and footwear, of 5.5%.

RBA analysts expect two-digit increases in the coming months as well and a mild stabilisation only towards the end of the year.

That will mainly be a consequence of the base period and, to a lesser extent, of a slowing down of economic activity, they said.

They don't expect energy and food prices to fall, only to slow down and possibly stabilise at the currently increased levels, forecasting that this year Croatia will record the highest inflation rate in its recent history, 9.2% or higher.

RBA analysts believe part of the inflationary pressures will be carried into 2023, saying it is quite likely that energy prices will remain high. However, administrative price capping must stop at some point, which will result in higher prices of certain products and services, they said.

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

Croatia Logs 771 New COVID Cases, 8 Deaths

ZAGREB, 17 August, 2022 - In the last 24 hours, 771 coronavirus cases, out of 3,272 tests, and eight related deaths have been registered in Croatia, the national COVID-19 crisis management team said on Wednesday.

There are 6,427 active cases, including 657 hospitalised patients, 29 of whom on ventilators, while 2,855 persons are self-isolating.

Croatia has logged 1,201,743 COVID cases to date, the death toll has reached 16,528, and 70.86% of the adult population has been vaccinated, of whom 68.83% fully.

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

Darija Walter of PLANTaža on Art Project Urban Intervention Osijek

August 17, 2022 - A wonderful artistic intervention has just dawned in the city of Osijek. It put the spotlight on the historical beauty of cities. A tram stop that dates to 1926 was refurbished by the famous street artist Lonac, under the Urban Intervention project headed by Darija Walter.

Darija is a woman changing things at the local level, to stimulate change on a global level. In recent years, life in Croatia has focused more and more on the capital, while the rest remains neglected, uninhabited, and without events and plans. Darija operates through the association PLANTaža. She also works on a series of projects that truly change Osijek, and not only Osijek but contribute to the entire community. Journal spoke with Daria about all the current and upcoming plans that, little by little, bring life to where it should have always been.

298401491_5346929682058899_5412929183373276338_n.jpg

Darija Walter on her beginnings, art…

You have now been in the PLANTaža association for eight years, how do you see those years, compared to the time before you became part of it, how much has it changed your life?

I have been working with the PLANTaža Association since the very beginning of the association's work when an enthusiastic group of people gathered who wanted to start some new stories in Osijek. Today, eight years later, I realize how much the association has influenced my life. It gave me a new opportunity that I was not aware of before and thus determined my path. I have always known that I wanted to do work that has a direct impact on solving problems in the community, offers sustainable and meaningful solutions, and involves all age groups. It never crossed my mind that I would do that in the city I love so much. The city I wanted to leave eight years ago because I didn't see any prospects.

"It would be nice to write about Slavonia in an optimistic tone"

How much, in your opinion, does investment and contribution to a city, especially not the capital of Croatia, mean, on a larger level, while most investments are oriented specifically towards Zagreb or the south of the country?

Like any other area, the city of Osijek could use investment, especially in the field of creating new jobs. Although we do not stand side by side with the big companies, the association is an employer that, through EU funds, offers the opportunity for employment and first work experiences. We are not the only ones there. We cooperate with a whole range of associations that operate in Osijek and continue to develop their stories despite numerous obstacles. Croatia does not only consist of Zagreb. It is precisely for this reason that equal investment should be encouraged so that other parts of the country can also expect development.

279493058_5070284056390131_8983070193340849678_n.jpg

In addition, it would be nice if Slavonia and Baranja were written about in an optimistic tone, and not just about mass emigration. Although unfortunately many have sought their happiness outside this region, life has not disappeared. Changes are happening, people are trying, and a lot is happening regardless of all the challenges that stand in the way of success in this ungrateful environment of ours.

"Only through our involvement can we influence changes"

What is your motivation for projects? This is now your lifestyle, not just an occupation.

Working in an association becomes a way of life, whether I want to admit it or not. Classic working hours do not exist. Vacations have become an invisible concept to me because most of the activities are carried out during the summer. My office is wherever I can connect to the Internet. My motivation is to influence change, however small it may be. Only this way can we contribute to the creation of some new, sustainable and healthy habits that can only further enrich our lives. Only through our engagement can we directly affect changes in our community – which in the long term affects the understanding of the kind of society we leave to our descendants as an inheritance.

276286307_4960282637390274_4955288305166906089_n.jpg

Reconstruction of the oldest tram stop

You have just presented an art installation within the oldest tram stop in Osijek through the Urban Intervention project, can you tell us more about it?

The Urban Intervention project is being implemented for the fourth year in a row to present artistic illustrations within the oldest tram stop in Osijek, which dates back to 1926. The station was neglected for many years and left to wait for better days. This is exactly why, with the support of donors and the Conservation Department in Osijek, we decided to restore the glass surface and give it a new purpose.

296054834_5339408366144364_6986887921017241724_n.jpg

We desire to return the stop to its original state, refurbish the entire surface, and with the support of the City, restorers, and the Conservation Department in Osijek, make it a real small gallery space, unique in Croatia. Until that happens, we will continue to present new artistic illustrations to further promote urban culture and new artistic practices. This year we presented an artistic illustration signed by the famous Croatian street artist Lonac. So far, Slađana Zubić, Tea Jurišić, and Vedran Klemens have introduced themselves to the Osijek audience.

Project Urbani Osijek

The Urbani Osijek project connects urban culture through the tourist offer of the city. How much did it contribute to the tourist image of Osijek?

guiderica.png

The Urbani Osijek project was created last year by the secretary of the association, Vedran Grizbaher. The project itself includes the promotion of urban culture through a touristic approach and contains a whole series of creative activities such as cycle-urban routes, concept lectures I Travel Solo in which female travelers are presented. There is also an urban guide to Osijek, which was created as a desire to present the contents of Osijek in one place in an illustrated version beautifully painted by Yellow Yuri. The project gave birth to creative solutions and original tourist products, such as the already mentioned urban guide, which we plan to promote even further.

The first art workshop

You are preparing the first art workshop "Vibration of Art" soon, whose theme will be Nikola Tesla. Can you tell us more about that?

The Vibration of Art is a project whose activities we are very much looking forward to. Our first activity will start soon at the Slama Land Art Festival, which has been organized by the Slama association for more than 15 years. This year the theme is Nikola Tesla. In accordance with that, we will hold a land art workshop and a Tesla transformer workshop under the expert guidance of Nikola Faller. The project itself also includes informal theater dance workshops led by Mira Sekereš from Shine Dance Studio, panel discussions, and poetry evenings.

What is she looking forward to?

Do you spend the whole summer working and what are you looking forward to in the autumn?

This year is unique for several reasons, so the whole summer has been busy for me. I will take a short break in September, and until then I will continue in the same rhythm. In the autumn, I will be working on the PLANTida ecologically sustainable festival and a whole series of new things that have yet to come. In any case, I'm happy with this busy creativity, I enjoy the process of learning and tinkering, and as long as it's like that, it doesn't need to be any other way!

299998635_5372074222877778_6332858032739612629_n.jpg

All photos by Udruga PLANTaža

Osijek is the regional centre of Slavonia and Baranja, and much like the rest of eastern Croatia, it is indeed full of life. Why aren't you here?

How good is your knowledge of eastern Croatia anyway? Take the CROMADS test above - how many places do you recognise?

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated Lifestyle section.

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

Cultural Centre Mesnička (KCM) in Zagreb to Close

August 17, 2022 - While this is probably not the biggest breaking news in Croatia these days, there are a lot of people angry and said that a popular alternative bar, KCM in Zagreb is closing after many years.

I often get messages from our CEO Paul Bradbury which read "What do you know about this-or-that?". Usually, honestly, it's not much, but I'm a very proficient Googler, so I end up finding the answers for him. That is the dynamic which leads to him thinking that I'm the person who knows a lot about Croatia, so don't tell him it's all Google.

Anyway, today's question was if I knew anything about his local KCM in Mesnička being closed. I really haven't heard about that, and at first, I thought - oh, he must've gotten something wrong, no way was KCM closing. It has been a staple of Zagreb's cultural scene, a bar where exhibitions, workshops, courses, lectures were held, frequented by those who cared about the (alternative) culture for a long, long time. Located in the city centre, at the bottom of the Mesnička street, near the entrance of the tunnel and the beginning of the Strossmayer Promenade, it was almost always full of young people, loved by loyal locals and appreciated by tourists. Why would it be closed now? It made no sense.

And then I Googled, literally 'KCM closing' (in Croatian) and what came out is not what I was expecting at all:

To give you a brief overview of their Facebook post, yes, they're closing. They invited all of their friends to join them in the upcoming several days at their "Silent Protest Blanket Jam Parties", which will be the last opportunity to hang out there, as they will soon (not specified when exactly) have to close their doors. They thank the Croatian family farms, which are standing by them, so they will be able to welcome their guests with some local wine, rakija and a small snack, to thank them for being their loyal customers.

They go on to explain that all of the people working there worked several jobs, just to be able to keep working at KCM. They mention how they organized over 2000 various events and programs there, and were never helped by the local government, not even in a form of a free parking ticket for the performers to bring their instruments or exhibits. What they were given are 14 million kuna of parking tickets (I'm not entirely sure if that's hyperbole or what!).

They can no longer take the abuse from the institutions and the half-world (they use the beautiful Croatian word "polusvijet", which can be translated to English as "demimonde" and boy, it that a great translation and a metaphor) of Croatian bureaucracy. They complain that they've spent the last five years visiting various offices, offering bribes in the form of kulenova seka, rakija, and homemade Croatian cream from the industrial hemp for their hemorrhoids, just trying to find out where to get that one paper they were missing. They explain that in every office they were treated like vermin, made fun of for their appearance by the people in those offices unaware that their paychecks come from the public. They simply can not allow themselves to be continually blamed and punished, without any rhyme or reason, except for the desire to take everything they earn. One thing they still maintain is their freedom of choice, so they choose to close, and they feel like they've earned that freedom. They want their guests to find their freedom too, as they say that freedom is a start, while culture is the finish line. Their last line is dedicated to those who have been badgering them for years: "Get your head out of your own haemorrhoid-filled ass and stop thinking only of yourself."

As you might imagine, this post has caused a lot of anger among their Facebook followers and loyal guests. Many of them expressed disbelief that this is happening now, over a year after a progressive, almost alternative political power took over in Zagreb, and mention how many times they saw the current mayor in KCM. Others blame the structures put in place by the former administration, which were not dismantled by the current one. Most commenters are sad that KCM is closing and at the same time worried about what it says about the direction of policy of the city. Some mention the probable future for that location: yet another of the same bars, with a plexiglass-built terrace, where you'll be able to watch football games, owned by someone who is very capable of navigating the intricacies of Croatian bureaucracy and corruption. Just another step in the direction of a city without a soul. 

In another one of their posts, they invite their guests to join them tonight at 11 pm for a concert by Chris Ian, a longtime street musician in Zagreb, whom they call the "good spirit" of KCM.

 

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

Arctic Monkeys Rock Pula Arena

Pula, August 17th, 2022

British rock band Arctic Monkeys performed in front of a packed crowd in Pula last night. The concert was already sold out within seconds when personalised tickets went on sale in November. Rumors are that black market prices reached 5000HRK despite security measures. Supporting act Inhaler were also able to convince the mostly young crowd. (All Photos: Burak Canboy)

 

DSC09621_1_Medium.JPG

 

DSC09683_Medium.JPG

 

Approximately 7000 fans from all over Europe came to see the "Modern Day Gladiators entertain the masses" at the ancient Pula Arena. The Indie Rock band from Sheffield around lead singer and guitarist Alex Turner performed 21 songs from 5 albums and left the guests leaving with smiling faces after having waited for the band to return to touring since Corona hit. The stage was paired with two large screens on the sides and a ring of light with additional live video footage in the center. Regular concert visitors claimed this having been the best performance at Pula Arena since the Foo Fighters. Alongside Turner, the three regular band members Jamie Cook (guitar), Matt Helders (drums) and Nick O'Malley (bass guitar) shared the stage with touring members Davey Latter (percussion) and Tyler Parkford (keyboards) to deliver a show on the highest level.

 

DSC097192_Medium.JPG

 

DSC09793_Medium.JPG

 

 

Supporting act, Inhaler -an Irish rock band from Dublin- also quickly captured hearts. The band consists of vocalist and guitarist Elijah Hewson, bassist Robert Keating, guitarist Josh Jenkinson and drummer Ryan McMahon. Insiders long know the band since Elijah Hewson the son of legendary Bono started in 2012. The band did not need to live off of the big name who was enjoying the event from the VIP lounge. Inhaler seized the opportunity to hype the crowd and even managed the security when needed, just as if they never do anything else.

 

DSC063342_Medium.JPG

 

DSC094852_Medium.JPG

 

DSC09477_Medium.JPG

 

Most heard comments after the concert:

"This was surely one of the most awaited concerts in 2022."

"It's not every day that you get to sing along live to amazing songs like RU Mine?Do I Wanna Know? and I Bet That You Look Good On The Dancefloor."

"Arctic Monkeys picked one of the greatest locations on Earth."

"We were hoping to also hear new songs, but in the end it didn't really matter."

 

 

 

 DSC065373_Medium.JPG

 

DSC09519_Medium.JPG

 

 DSC09546_Medium.JPG

 

 

 

 

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

TCN Photo Contest: We Have a Winner!

August 17, 2022 - Organized by Total Croatia News, and with a unique collaboration with Plitvice Lakes National Park, the TCN Photo Contest has a winner, who will be able to visit the largest and oldest national park in Croatia with a companion!

On June 20, Total Croatia News announced their first collaboration with the largest and oldest national park, and definitely one of the most beloved, Plitvice Lakes. With spring over and paving the way for summer, Total Croatia News sought to encourage both locals and visitors to Croatia to share their best photographs of the country's natural beauty. While the goal was to promote such beauty through the eyes of numerous users on Instagram, Total Croatia News and Plitvice Lakes would reward their favorite photograph with two tickets for the author to visit the National Park, courtesy of Plitvice.

Through Instagram, our followers and more users shared their photos, and those who complied with the rules entered the competition.

After the deadline for submission of photos, representatives of Total Croatia News and Plitvice Lakes National Park chose one winning photo and two photos with special recognition. The winners of the TCN photo contest are the following.

The winner of the photo contest organized by Total Croatia News in collaboration with the Plitvice Lakes National Park was Elena Tessitori (@ienatessi), from Arta Terme in Italy, who submitted a spectacular photograph with a view of the National Park from high, showing its beautiful colors. Elena is the winner of two tickets to Plitvice Lakes, courtesy of the National Park. Congratulations, Elena!

1659964077561_2_1.jpg

Likewise, Total Croatia News and Plitvice Lakes National Park have wanted to give special recognition to two very good photographs and their authors. An honorable mention goes to Stefania Hodak (@iloveplitvice), a Croat from Drežnik Grad, who showed Plitvice at another time of year, just as beautiful and worth visiting. Congratulations, Stefania!

IMG_20220707_222556_584_1.jpg

Photo: Reshma R.

And also an honorable mention to Reshma R (@reshmaramjyothi), originally from India and currently residing in Münster, Germany, whose photo of what she considers her favorite place in the world evokes feelings of peace and fantasy. Well done Reshma!

Congratulations to the recognized authors and all the participants of this TCN photo contest, who did not make the task of choosing only three photographs easy. We congratulate your great work and your originality. We encourage everyone to continue sharing the natural beauty that Croatia offers in all its regions, national parks, and nature parks. Likewise, we would like to thank Plitvice Lakes National Park in a very special way for its generous collaboration, willingness, and great work in managing the National Park and promoting the country as a top natural destination.

For more on what to do and how to get to Plitvice Lakes National Park, check out our dedicated Total Croatia page HERE. Additionally, feel free to visit our 2021 guide on all Croatian National and Nature Parks HERE.

For more on travel in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

How Will Mystery Shoppers Protect Croatian Consumers?

August the 17th, 2022 - Just how will mystery shoppers work to protect Croatian consumers and their rights out in the field as we edge ever closer to Eurozone accession?

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, although it was said that the application would be finished by now, that has unfortunately failed to happen, meaning that the mystery shoppers haven't yet gone out into action in the country's stores.

It was also explained how these mystery shoppers will monitor the entire process of price alterations as we approach Eurozone entry and work to protect Croatian consumers.

"Each mystery shopper will keep their eye on twenty different products, they'll be the exact same products every month being sold by the same retailers or service providers. It must be checked whether the price is stated in accordance with the law. For now, we're only listing prices in kuna, because the obligation to declare prices in both kuna and euros will only been mandatory as of September the 5th, 2022. Then, we'll start checking whether the price is expressed in kuna and euros, whether there's a fixed exchange rate being used, and whether or not it's being calculated correctly. Given that the prices must be expressed to two decimal places, we have to make sure that there's no rounding up of the figures going on,'' said the president of the Association for Consumer Protection.

She also said that it is to be assumed that the rounding up of prices will also occur in Croatia if it happened in Italy, Slovenia and Austria as well.

''Croatia isn't going to be an exception, given that the country even worse than those countries in terms of legal regulation. We'll probably have to cope with that too. Since there is a lot of talk about it, I expect that it won't occur on such a large scale, that we'll manage to control it, so traders will probably also be aware that they should show the correct prices. If they start rounding up, we'll report it," she warned.

Where should Croatian consumers exercise the most care? In all situations, the president of the aforementioned association believes.

"We expect that it will be very difficult for customers in the beginning. It will be especially difficult in the period from New Year to January the 14th, 2023, when it will be possible to pay in both currencies, and merchants must only return euros. It's there where problems will occur because people will pay for items in kuna and receive euros in return. We're warning people that they should react to any issues with that right there, before they move away from the cash register," she said.

She noted that Croatian consumers must pay attention to the fact that merchants and service providers have a price list with prices in kuna and euros available to them.

She assessed the reduction of VAT on food as a bad decision by the Croatian Government.

"The opposite has now happened, items haven't become cheaper, they've become significantly more expensive. If the government had limited the prices and used that money to subsidise retailers and producers, then consumers would have benefited," the president of the Association for Consumer Protection believes.

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

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

From Ukraine to India - Around 100,000 Foreign Workers in Croatia

August the 17th, 2022 - There are more and more foreign workers in Croatia from all over the world. There will soon be more than 100,000, in fact, with employees having come from nearby war-torn Ukraine to all the way from India and beyond.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, RTL talked about the growing number of foreign workers in Croatia, but also how we might work to retain the ''homegrown'' labour force from Croatia, with the CEO of the Croatian Association of Employers (HUP), Damir Zoric.

The Republic of Croatia will soon exceed the number of 100,000 work permits having been issued for foreign (non EEA) workers, and Zoric said that the cause of this is the large demographic changes that Croatia is still going through, the increasing numbers of the younger generation leaving Croatia to work elsewhere, and the paradoxical situation of the outflow of labour on the one hand, but also economic growth on the other.

"The Croatian economy has to find its way and now requires the import of labour," he told RTL. He also said that highly qualified workers and low-qualified workers, of which there are very many, come to Croatia.

"These are workers in service industries, primarily in tourism, hospitality and catering, they're also construction workers who are extremely needed and in high demand, and there are some of them working in agriculture in seasonal jobs. Croatia is dominated by foreigners who come from neighbouring countries, traditionally for them, Croatia is the area where they find work. There are more and more people coming from Asian countries, but also from Ukraine and the Philippines," he said.

He also said that employers only have words of praise for foreign workers in Croatia. "People praise them, saying that they're extremely hardworking, disciplined, yes, of course they need a period of adjustment, which is natural, but I don't know of a single case where people have expressed themselves in any sort of negative manner," he said.

He also commented on whether the days have passed when local workers worked in hospitality, tourism and catering establishments on the coast, considering that there are more and more foreign workers in Croatia doing such jobs. "We need to see what happens in certain Western countries. When you arrive at a hotel in Paris, it's rare to see a native Frenchman working there, these are people who have sought happiness in work and life in France. Croatia is on that path and it will not stop now," he said.

He also commented on whether foreign workers in Croatia work under conditions and for wages that Croats don't want to work for.

"Everything is a matter of the market, it's about the relationship between demand and supply. For some, a salary of 500 or 600 euros is good, for some it isn't, and that's why what is happening is that some people leave and some come," he said. When asked how we might retain the local workforce, Zoric said: "Net wages need to be higher for Croatia to be more attractive to people with a higher educational structure, more complex knowledge and more demanding occupations.''

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated politics section.

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

Croatian Pensions to Rise by Around Six Percent in September This Year

August the 17th, 2022 - Croatian pensions are set to increase by at least six percent in September this year for a large group of those in receipt of them.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, during the month of September of this year, Croatian pensions will increase by at least 6 percent, or more precisely from 150 kuna to 210 kuna for the largest group of pensioners whose pensions range from between 2,500 kuna and 3,500 kuna, according to a report from Vecernji list.

The average pension paid out to those entitled to them during the month of July 2022 stood at around 2,700 kuna, and if you look only at people who completed their entire working life in Croatia, then the average is slightly higher, standing at 3,050 kuna.

With this increase in Croatian pensions, the average worker's pension during the month of September will be around 3,200 kuna.

People with fifteen years of service have pensions of less than 1,000 kuna, and in receipt of those between 1,500 kuna -2,000 kuna are those with 23 years of service. Those who have worked for 32 years receive 2,500 kuna - 3,500 kuna, and for 38 years of service, Croatian pensions stand at around 4,500 kuna - 8,000 kuna.

The average salary in this country currently stands at around 7,600 kuna, meaning that at this moment in time, Croatian pensions are unfortunately still almost two and a half times less than the average salaries of working people are.

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

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

Zadar Hinterland Drought Causing Desperation for Local Winemakers

August the 17th, 2022 - The ongoing Zadar hinterland drought is causing a feeling of insecurity and desperation among local winemakers of the area, of which there are a great many. The Zadar hinterland hasn't really seen any rain for around two months now, and it doesn't seem as if relief will come any time soon.

As Morski writes, it hasn't really rained in the Zadar hinterland for two months now, and the ongoing drought is severely harming both local farmers and winemakers, especially in Nadinsko polje, the most ecological vineyard in all of Croatia. Young vineyards with white varieties growing there suffered the most, and if there is no rain in the near future, the harvest will also be worse, and due to the lower yield, there could be problems in the wine cellars as well.

''There's a small amount only, it's pretty miserable. The rest [of what we have] is as it was a month ago, nothing is developing, it isn't getting any colour to it and it should already be turning yellowish so that you can see that it is ripening, but it isn't doing so because these leaves have been burned,'' pointed out winegrower and winemaker Tomislav Glavic.

Glavic planted a Marastina vineyard in the nutrient-rich mud here five years ago. After last year, when the crop was affected by extremely cold temperatures and adverse conditions, this year should have been very good.

''This is our autochthonous variety of Marastina which I had very high hopes for. Last year, everything was frozen, there weren't even any grapes to speak of. This year the harvest was meant to be excellent, it should have been one of the better vintages. Until a month ago, everything was fine,'' he said. The situation is the same in the nearby vineyard of Sime Skaulj in the Zadar hinterland. Both his varieties suffered.

''This is a young three-year-old plantation that should produce extremely high-quality wines, however, it will be difficult to get a quality wine from here now. There's been no photosynthesis, no ripening, no sugar in the grapes, even though these are varieties that achieve very high sugars, but this year that isn't going to happen,'' said Skaulj.

Droughts in the Zadar hinterland, scorching, damagingly high temperatures and storms this summer have all been a fatal combination for these young vineyards.

''We had days when the temperature was 45 and there hasn't been a single drop of rain here since June the 9th. Actually, we had about four tiny drops ten days ago, but that's neither here nor there,'' said Glavic.

''This vineyard needs about 30 litres per square meter. If 30 litres of water had fallen here back at the end of July, it would have been amazing. We don't need a lot of water here, but we don't have a lot of it either,'' explained Skaulj.

''The annual requirements of the vines in terms of precipitation are somewhere from 650 to 850 litres of rain water. From April the 1st to July the 30th, we had somewhere around 176 litres with a very unfavourable precipitation schedule. We've actually got a situation in which these bunches have been exposed to very harmful UV radiation,'' said Zvonimir Vlatkovic from the Croatian Ministry of Agriculture.

If there is no serious rainfall soon, even though the vines have deep roots and are more resistant to drought, even the older, well-established vines will feel it. The harvest from the young plantations could be below average, and the quality could also come into question.

There are about 1,330 hectares of vineyards in not only the Zadar hinterland but spanning the entire territory of Zadar County. All of them have been constantly exposed to extreme temperatures. The situation is better in those that have an irrigation system, although they're also struggling to maintain an average and high-quality crop this year. In recent years, Zadar's local winemakers have made a big step forward when it comes to quality. The market recognises and acknowledges them, and it would be much easier to maintain that level of quality if the plantations didn't depend solely on the whims of nature, which is often cruel.

The straw for not only the winemakers of the Zadar hinterland but for winemakers up and down the country could be EU funds. In the new programme period starting in 2023, the emphasis is, among other things, on irrigation systems, as reported by HRT.

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

Page 2 of 3664

Search