Friday, 31 December 2021

Croatian Brist Olive: Vodnjan Family Business Sees Oil Shipped to USA

December the 31st, 2021 - The Croatian Brist Olive oils, made by a family business located in Vodnjan in Istria, have made their way across the pond to the United States of America, placing Croatian products firmly on the radar there once again.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marta Duic writes, one family business from Vodnjan is busy diversifying all of its activities, but the basis of everything they engage in is authentic products which are then exported to a number of countries across the globe. On the eve of the festive period at Br00m44 on Zagreb's famous Dolac market, a presentation of extra virgin olive oils of the new vintage Brist Olive brand from Vodnjan was held.

Lena Puhar O’Grady, who leads the presentations, education and marketing on Brist’s team, presented her family business, told the story of their brand development and guided guests through three of the six types of Brist Olive oil they currently produce. One monosort was tasted - Vodnjanska Buza oil, as well as two blends.

“Our olive grove is located in the vicinity of Vodnjan, it's beautifully positioned, overlooking the Brijuni islands and spreads over nine hectares where 2,500 olive trees grow, mostly indigenous Istrian varieties. We produce about 8,000 litres of oil per year, with the expectation of growth when all of the olives grow well and come to fruition,'' said Puhar O’Grady.

Demand is growing...

Each of their Brist Olive oils was then paired with a type of cheese from the Istrian Mljekara Latus from Zminj, with sourdough foccaccia from the Zagreb bakery Breadclub, and the tasting was then rounded off with a chocolate tart with olive oil, designed especially for the occasion by food blogger Janja Benic. The chocolate tart was served with a few drops of Brist’s Exclusive Selection olive oil, and as Puhar O’Grady explained, this is a form of olive oil made in a limited edition from selected olives from century-old buza and rozinjola trees.

As she claimed, the Brist Olive oil team process their olives in the Grubic oil mill in nearby Bale, with which they have a long-term cooperation, and their main customers are individuals, mostly foreign citizens paying visits to Istria. They realise their biggest sales directly in their store in the old town of Vodnjan and through online sales.

"Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, our online sales have quadrupled since before. A large part of our clients come after participating in our guided tours and tastings in the olive grove,'' she said.

In addition, Brist Olive oil is exported through 20 international partners within the EU, Norway and Switzerland, and from this year for the very first time to America. They also cooperate with specialised stores, mainly in Istria and Zagreb, as well as restaurants throughout Croatia and the Milenij Hotel chain in Opatija.

For more, check out Made in Croatia.

Tuesday, 21 December 2021

Lika Škripavac Becomes 32nd Croatian Product With EU Protected Name

December 21, 2021 - The Ministry of Agriculture reported on Tuesday that the Lika škripavac has become the 32nd Croatian product with a protected name in the European Union (EU), which guarantees consumers the purchase of an authentic product.

Turističke Priče reports that the Lika škripavac has been awarded the European protected geographical indication, which the European Commission has published in the Official Journal of the European Union. Thus, Lički škripavac is entered in the register of protected designations of origin and protected geographical indications and protected throughout the European Union. The EU trademark, like the geographical indication on the packaging, guarantees consumers the purchase of an authentic product.

The process of protection of the name Lički škripavac began in December 2017, when the Association of Small Cheesemakers of Lika-Senj County "Lički škripavac" submitted a request to the Ministry of Agriculture to protect the geographical indication called "Lički škripavac".

Lika škripavac is a soft, fatty cheese with a cylindrical or square shape. It is milky-white on the surface without crust and closed in cross-section or with a small number of mechanical openings created by the retention of whey during cheese shaping. Its taste is milky-sweet and moderately salty, and the consistency is characteristically gummy and squeaks during consumption. The production method of Lika škripavac has been passed down from generation to generation and has been preserved to this day, and the squeaking property, after which this cheese got its name, is due to the high content of milk fat and protein in milk.

The production of Lika škripavac is allowed only in the geographical area of ​​Lika from the milk of cows raised in that area. The production area is located in three administrative regions, mostly in Lika-Senj County, and to a lesser extent in Zadar and Karlovac Counties.

The Republic of Croatia now has 32 agricultural and food products whose name is registered in the European Union as a protected designation of origin or a protected geographical indication. In addition to the currently registered name "Lički škripavac", the product names registered so far are: Krk prosciutto, Extra virgin olive oil Cres, Neretva mandarin, Ogulin sauerkraut / Ogulin sauerkraut, Baranja kulen, Lika potatoes, Istrian prosciutto / Istrian prosciutto, Drniški prosciutto, Drniški prosciutto, Poljički soparnik / Poljički zeljanik / Poljički uljenjak, Zagorje turkey, Krk olive oil, Korčula olive oil, Pag lamb, Šolta olive oil, Varaždin cabbage, Slavonian kulen / Slavonian kulin, Međimurje meat 'from tiblica, Slavonian honey Istria, Paška sol, Zagorski mlinci, Paški sir, Bjelovarski kvargl, Brački varenik, Varaždinski klipič, Malostonska kamenica, Rudarska greblica.

Make sure to follow our dedicated Made in Croatia page for more news like this.

Saturday, 11 September 2021

Croatian Company Holosys' Remote Reading Devices Impresses Russians

September the 11th, 2021 - The Croatian company Holosys develops and manufactures advanced electrical devices which are based on NB-IOT (narrowband Internet of Things) for the remote reading of energy consumption. They're present in as many as fifty countries around the world.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Darko Bicak writes, as of this week, they have added the largest country in the world - Russia - to their already impressive list of their export markets. Namely, the Croatian company Holosys performed at the EcwaTech 2021 fair at the beginning of the week, the largest event in the water industry in Russia, and clearly caught many an eye.

“It was our first step into this enormous market and we're pleased to be able to present our solutions to all visitors, both from Russia and abroad. We've established contact with numerous utility companies and system integrators from this part of the world and we're continuing with more talks about specific projects. As always, making new contacts means new learning opportunities and opportunities for growth,'' they said from Holosys.

As Tomislav Lekic, CEO of the Croatian company Holosys, explained, they're entering the Russian market with new technology that is beginning to be applied in various economic sectors, and interest is growing due to a number of advantages - better signal coverage, reliable data delivery, savings for utilities and companies. Holosys independently develops, manufactures and supplies the NB-IoT Bridge and the NB-IoT Pulse Reader P1-N, modules that enable connection to the telecom operator's NB-IoT networks.

The company has been doing business with numerous companies and utility companies across Croatia for fifteen years now, while worldwide they work with established manufacturers of telemetry equipment, system integrators and utility companies. Their solutions are in more than 500,000 measures of water and gas consumption in the world.

All these experiences are built into the development and improvement of the NB IoT system, and according to Director Lekic, the Croatian company Holosys' NB-IoT device can connect up to five metres at once, so less equipment is needed to establish a stable transmission of readings.

''The ideal scenario for the implementation of the solution includes a module that connects to the consumption measures, and which connects to the mobile network through which it sends the collected data. The data is then displayed via software and can be analysed at a remote location.

The devices are extremely durable and can operate at temperatures from -20 to +80 degrees Celsius, the battery lasts up to ten years, depending on the frequency of sending the consumption data, and the devices have IP68 protection against water penetration,'' explained Lekic.

They further explained from the Croatian company Holosys that utilities and companies get a long-term and reliable solution for secure data transfer, and it is possible to implement it where the standard mobile signal fails to reach, so it is ideal for rural areas and underground infrastructure. Implementation, they claim, is simple, and as the infrastructure is significantly simplified, meaning that maintenance costs are kept low.

''With the implementation of NB-IoT, utility companies gain access to the real-time monitoring of their distribution network, and in the event of a breakdown or leak, they can react much faster and as such work to reduce losses. They also get the infrastructure through which end users can access an application that sounds an alarm in the event of a pipe burst and provides information on excessive customer consumption,'' concluded the director.

For more, make sure to check out Made in Croatia.

Friday, 13 August 2021

Original Croatian Products Positioned on Brand New EU Portal

August the 13th, 2021 - Original Croatian products have been placed on a brand new European Union (EU) portal, putting a spring in the step of the many much loved domestic products this country traditionally produces.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the European Commission (EU) has created an online portal on products with special geographical labels called GIview, which provides an overview of these products protected by and across the European Union, including designations in the process of protection and geographical indications of non-EU countries.

It is brand new a portal where product information is presented in the form of what's known as a GI card containing the contact details of groups of manufacturers of geographical labels and their control bodies, the product's production area shown on the map, photos and the product's description, the geographical area and any sustainability statements.

As the youngest member state of the European Union, the Republic of Croatia and as such original Croatian products are currently in ninth place in terms of the number of registered names of agricultural and food products, and the first on the list of products with this sought after label was prosciutto from Krk.

Croatian producers of these products, in addition to recording an increasing trend in sales on both domestic and European markets, point out that protected geographical labels and authenticity are not only important for product recognition, but also have the function of protection from the threat of the grey market.

Today, there are 31 protected original Croatian products, 21 more name protection procedures are underway, and the last to be registered as far as Croatian wine goes was Muskat Momjanski, which has been labelled since the beginning of August.

For more information on original Croatian products, special European Union labels and much more, make sure to check out our Made in Croatia section.

Monday, 31 May 2021

First Three Croatian Gavrilovic Products to Head for Ukraine

May the 31st, 2021 - The very first three Croatian Gavrilovic products are set to head east to Ukraine as economic ties between Croatia and Ukraine strengthen.

As Novac/Jozo Vrdoljak writes, on Wednesday, June the 2nd, 2021, the first delivery of Croatian Gavrilovic products in cans will head to Ukraine, intended for the largest Ukrainian retail chain, Fozzy Group. Quite symbolically given everything this city went through at the end of 2020, the cans will depart from the Petrinja production plant.

''We announced such a possibility in the past, and now the realisation of the first export of Croatian Gavrilovic products to Ukraine is finally beginning. Despite the difficult circumstances due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the export of Croatian products to Ukraine is currently proceeding smoothly. Our existing producers are increasing the quantities and assortments they have on offer, and we're constantly introducing new ones, such as with Gavrilovic now. Of course, we aren't going to just stop at this because we're also working on the placement of products of some new Croatian manufacturers and on strengthening the existing ones.

In all this, we have the exceptional support of State Secretary at the Ministry of Agriculture Tugomir Majdak,'' said Ivica Piric, the Honorary Consul of Ukraine in Split and President of the Ukrainian Chamber of Commerce for Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Piric added that now, in a situation when the pandemic is weakening and when we're witnessing the easing of anti-epidemic measures across Croatia, the organisation of the Ukrainian-Croatian Economic Forum is very likely.

''We've already chosen a date, which is August the 23rd and 24th. These are the dates when Ukraine celebrates its Independence Day, and this year it will mark 30 years of independence, as such, the Croatian leadership is expected to visit Ukraine. That's the plan as long as something unforeseen doesn't happen. Such forums are very important because they are the easiest way to conclude deals and improve economic cooperation. Companies from the food, ICT, construction, defense, energy and tourism sectors will participate and there will be talks about investments, either existing ones that are being developed and realised, or new investments in both countries,'' said Ivica Piric.

Trpimir Lovrekovic, the director of marketing and exports of this well known Croatian company, revealed that in this first export of Croatian Gavrilovic products to Ukraine, things are going to begin with three products. These are canned meat breakfast, ham and mandolin ham, all of which have bene popular for a very long time among consumers here in Croatia.

''Thanks to the engagement and mediation of Ivica Piric, cooperation with the largest Ukrainian retail chain has come to fruition. This is our first delivery to the Ukrainian market from which we expect a lot. We've talked to the responsible persons of the Fozzy Group, and we expect to expand our range and increase the quantities of these three products.

Gavrilovic is taking small steps to position itself on the global market, and after Ukraine we expect the opening of the markets of countries that gravitate to that market, such as Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. The Ukrainian market is the first step in expanding towards those countries,'' Lovrekovic concluded.

For more, follow our dedicated business section.

Friday, 16 April 2021

31 Croatian Products "Protected" Since 2015, 21 Still Await Desired Label

April the 16th, 2021 - There may well be numerous Croatian products now protected at the European Union level, but many are still sitting waiting on the list, hoping to get their hands on that much desired label.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marta Duic writes, April the 14th, 2015, was the date on which Krk prosciutto became the very first Croatian food product registered in the European Union (EU), and the Croatian Parliament passed a decision marking that day as the Day of Protected Croatian Indigenous Products.

To this day, the Republic of Croatia has 31 agricultural and food products whose names are registered with a protected designation of origin or a protected geographical indication label, ranking Croatia ninth in the entire bloc when it comes to protected local products.

In addition, 21 other procedures for the protection of the names of various Croatian products are currently in progress. This refers more precisely to the registration of the names of edible Croatian products, and the last ones to have been registered are Dalmatian pancetta and pečenica.

According to the relevant ministry, the ultimate goal of manufacturers is not to protect their names and the registration of the label, but the added value of the products they use in marketing and achieving better sales prices for protected Croatian products, as well as the raising of competitiveness here on the local market and further afield on the highly demanding European Union market.

“The Republic of Croatia has a rich tradition of the production and preparation of various agricultural and food products that are characterised by a special quality and a traditional way of production.

The recognisability of the products is also connected with the recognisability of the area in which they're produced, which contributes to the strengthening of tourism, but also to the sustainable development of more rural areas of the country,'' pointed out Marija Vuckovic, Minister of Agriculture.

For more on Croatian products, including edible ones, as well as restaurants and recipes, check out our dedicated section.

Saturday, 19 December 2020

Crotaste: New Croatian Food Store Opens in Heart of Zagreb

December the 19th, 2020 - The pandemic has showcased just how heavily we need to turn towards homegrown produce, and one brand new Croatian food store, Crotaste, opened its doors in the very heart of Zagreb to promote domestic products and local OPGs.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marta Duic writes, the Crotaste Croatian Food House was opened in the centre of Zagreb in Cesarceva street on Friday. It is a promotional and sales centre whose goal is to provide small and medium-sized Croatian producers from all over the country a place to promote and sell their local products.

Crotaste will boast a very wide range of domestic products, and products with European quality labels have an advantage when it comes to marketing. As Krunoslav Dugalic, the director of the Croatian Agency for Agriculture and Food (HAPIH) explained, with this move, they enabled everyone who has outgrown doorstep sales far easier placement, and products will rotate, there will be county by county promotion, all in line with the ultimate goal of connecting Green (continental) and Blue (Adriatic) Croatia. Currently, the number of items being sold at Crotaste stands at more than 200 and they come from about a hundred family farms from all parts of the country.

Crotaste's shelves include Slavonian kulen, Dalmatian and Istrian prosciutto, GMO free eggs, asparagus, wine and many other high-quality Croatian products, from olive oil to Pag cheese, arancino and fish from the Adriatic, which the capital's residents will be able to buy for everyday consumption, as will tourists.

"Everything offered here is original and healthy, and this is just one of the pieces of the mosaic in creating a better Croatia, a better Slavonia," said Bozo Galic, Vukovar-Srijem County Prefect, and Minister Mario Banozic agreed with him. Slavonia can certainly be a generator of agricultural production. He also mentioned that he hopes that soon, the trade situation will be more favourable and that Croatian products will be on the tables of EU countries.

"Croatian agriculture is vulnerable, but we're slowly changing that. This year, we've achieved the highest growth in ten years in terms of both productivity and sales, and we'll continue to help domestic producers with measures. Agricultural food production is the future, and projects like this will be even more present. We're a small country, and we can boast of as many as 28 products with European quality labels,'' said the Minister of Agriculture Marija Vuckovic, who asked people to buy local during this festive season.

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Monday, 2 November 2020

Fantastic Growth of Croatian-made Products in Western European Countries

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 31st of October, 2020, after taking over Adriatic taste plus, which has a well-established distribution network in Ireland, in the middle of this year, Adriatic has expanded its distribution network to the fast-growing Irish market, which is estimated to boast more than 30,000 Croats. Thanks to this business move, there will be a greater placement of Croatian-made products, not only in this country, but also in other Western European markets, according to Adriatic.

"In the first three quarters of this year, the Adriatic group recorded a growth of 40 percent, with Germany alone seeing an incredible 55 percent sales growth. Thanks to investing in the internal organisation and markets, all members of the group expect the realisation of annual sales plans for all brands at the end of this month. In the coming years, in addition to growth in the markets where we're present, we plan to conquer the markets of France and Italy, which have not yet become widely acquainted with Croatian-made products and our offer, through their own distribution companies,'' said Amir Bekic, CEO for strategic corporate development Adriatic Group.

Thanks to Adriatic's efforts, the Irish market was flooded with products from Atlantic Grupa, Podravka, Kras, Gavrilovic, Franck and other Croatian-made products and food brands. In addition to immigrants from Croatia, and tourists who tasted Croatian-made products during the summer and are happy to look for them on the shelves of their own supermarkets, Croatian-made products satisfy even the very picky Irish because they consistently bring in new flavours and quality.

"We're committed to working with Croatian companies in both the Irish and other EU markets. I'd especially like to highlight the successful example of joint sales growth with Atlantic Group of 32 percent this year. And with Argeta alone in Germany, we're recording an increase in sales of over 2 million euros when compared to last year. We're open for cooperation with all Croatian companies, which we guarantee a serious presence on prestigious European markets,'' said Anel Cerimagic.

It is obvious that the European market, in addition to boasting an extremely rich offer of international products, is still looking for something indigenous and different, which is why they're ready to taste the new offer coming from Croatia and the country's immediate region. Croatia is recognised in Europe as a beautiful country with exceptionally well preserved nature. Its rich gastronomy is becoming more and more famous, as is the tradition of the food industry that has created some of the largest regional brands. In this wave of positive perceptions towards their country of origin, Croatian-made products also have the initial advantage of being perceived as quality. However, in an extremely competitive market, knowledge, energy and work are needed in order for products from these areas to win their place on the shelves of Western European supermarkets, and go beyond small shops with exotic ethnic products. This is exactly what Adriatic has been working on for years and represents a good ticket for Croatian and regional brands to the demanding market of a rich part of Europe.

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Sunday, 11 October 2020

New Award for Lino Lada Ice Cream from Podravka and Ledo

As Novac writes on the 10th of October, 2020 - Lino Lada ice cream, created in collaboration with Podravka and Ledo, won the Golden Basket (Zlatna Kosarica) for the best product in the year 2019, a prestigious annual award given by the magazine I TRGOVAC.

In the category in which there are traditionally the largest number of applicants and strong competition of top Croatian products, Lino Lada ice cream won the expert jury over with its unique taste and innovation. The Golden Basket is a new big recognition for Lino Lada ice cream, which was declared the best in the world at the International Ice Cream Consortium in Sweden last year.

''The Golden Basket for Product of the Year confirmed that, together with our partner Ledo, we've recognised the potential of expanding the range of Lino Lada cream spreads into new innovative categories such as impulse ice creams. In the past period, Lino Lada ice cream has achieved exceptional results and delighted consumers on both the domestic and global markets. The Lino Lada brand is once again proving to be a favourite cream spread, and winning the Golden Basket for the product of the year for the second year in a row is an additional confirmation of the quality and innovation of Podravka's products,'' said Vesna Visnic, Podravka's Director of Kids' Food, Sweets and Snacks.

''We're extremely honoured to have received this award as another proof of the quality of what we do, for Lino Lada ice cream, which we made in collaboration with Podravka, which is truly the perfect partner for such an attractive and innovative product. In addition, it is a confirmation dedicated to the hard work of our employees, and especially the development team that successfully turns their creative ideas into the finest ice creams and frozen products. So, congratulations to them too! Every year we try to develop some new flavours and combinations and take a step further in the desire to innovate and enhance our creativity to meet the most diverse requirements of our customers and consumers, because they're our number one priority. This shows that we're succeeding in that,'' said Stela Ilijas, Assistant Director of Marketing and Development.

Lino Lada ice cream was first launched on the market in April 2019. In just a few days since the launch, the first stocks were sold out, making it the most sought-after dessert in all of the Republic of Croatia, and a total of 2.8 million pieces of Lino Lada ice cream were sold on the Croatian and foreign markets last year.

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Friday, 18 September 2020

Croatian Hot Sauce Wins Over Domestic and Foreign Buyers

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marta Duic writes on the 17th of September, 2020, the Croatian hot sauce brand I love it hot/Volim ljuto has succeeded by continuously investing in business, expanding it, and actively winning over both domestic and foreign audiences.

Although the coronavirus crisis has slightly slowed down this Croatian hot sauce brand's business and plans, they have managed to increase the number of seedlings under their belt this year as well and as such they can realistically expect higher yields. This Croatian hot sauce story initially began seven years ago with the opening of a family farm, and two years later they opened a company for retail, wholesale and brand marketing.

"At the end of last year and the beginning of this year, we had an investment in ten new greenhouses with a total area of ​​1,500 square metres. We also planned to complete the expansion of the processing plant, but this is now going a bit slower due to the situation with the coronavirus pandemic. We've increased the number of seedlings, but not significantly because we expect a yield of up to 40 percent higher than last year due to the new greenhouses. So, it's the same area where in which we have a higher yield. The area on which we grow our produce today is just under one hectare in size, and all our plantations are under greenhouses or anti-hail nets, so the weather won't have a major impact on our yield,'' revealed Goran Vrabec, the director and founder of the Croatian hot sauce company Volim ljuto.

When they originally started out, they had only a few hot sauces to their name, and today the offer is much wider and in total, along with their seasonal items and gift packages, that number has risen to about two hundred products. Volim ljuto's products can be bought through their webshop or in their Spicy Days stores in Zagreb at Ilica 174, and the main products from this Croatian hot sauce company's range can be purchased throughout Croatia in small specialty stores they work with, such as Veronika delicacies.

''Our Spicy Days shop has been having good results. The level of interest and the sales have grown over time and we're now well known as the shop has been around for over three years. In it we have more than 1000 different items, not only Croatian products but also brands from all over the world. Of course, Croatian producers also have their place, especially when it comes to craft breweries. While the store wasn't operating, we compensated the sales revenue through online sales, which increased drastically during that period.

We had good cooperation with craft brewers who sold their beer through our web shop, that is, we were their platform for their sales, and they delivered it themselves. We kept that part of the offer even after the reopening,''  explained Vrabec.

Of the Croatian hot sauce company's total revenue, the webshop brings them about 35 percent, and they also cooperate with more than 350 restaurants and other catering and hospitality facilities. And that number is growing.

''Our best-selling products are our fermented sauces, Vrabasco, Vrabanero and Brutalero, which share equal sales throughout the year. The total amount of these nine sauces produced annually is about 25,000 pieces. We're currently working on new spice salts that will be in a new package with a practical grinder and on one specific sauce with a recipe from the Far East. The last product we presented was the Green Cherry hot sauce, which was made according to the recipe of the winner of last year's HomeChili competition for the best hot sauce,'' revealed Vrabec.

The director of Volim ljuto also revealed that they export smaller quantities of their products to specialised stores across the European Union (EU), and that they even place their products on Amazon through partners. They are also known for their collaborations with other Croatian producers and family farms from which new hit products are created.

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