Thursday, 28 April 2022

Istria Proclaimed Best Olive Region in World for 7th Consecutive Year

April the 28th, 2022 - Istria has been proclaimed the world's best olive region for the seventh year in a row, which will hardly come as a surprise to most who flock every year to this part of Croatia to get their fix.

As Morski writes, according to the world's guide to extra virgin olive oils (Flos Olei 2022), Istria is once again the world's best region for extra virgin olive oils, this declaration has been given to the peninsula now for the seventh time in a row. This is especially important for the promotion of Istria as a destination because the publication boasts oils from all over the world, ie from 55 olive groves spanning 5 continents. As such, this part of the country's many olive growers have rightfully found themselves in the company of the world's 500 best with a total share of as much as 13 percent.

66 olive growers from across the peninsula produced such high quality extra virgin olive oil that they deserve a prestigious award, ie inclusion in the thirteenth edition of Flos Oleia.

In this latest edition, the so-called ''bible for extra virgin olive oils'', 67 oils from Croatia are included, of which 66 are from Istria and one comes from further south in Dalmatia. A large number of Istria's olive growers achieved even better results compared to last year, which is proof of the continuous work they put into raising their quality and the application of the latest scientific and technological achievements in olive growing.

The success of local olive growers is far from accidental. With favourable agro-climatic conditions, it is the result of numerous agricultural policies in that area over the past 25 years, such as the intensive education of local olive growers, the wider distribution of seedlings, but most importantly, loans approved by the County Fund for Agriculture and Agrotourism of Istria, as reported by Regional Express.

Thanks to education, the technology of olive growing in Istria has been completely altered, as has the time of harvest, and large investments made by local olive growers with the support of Istria County have enabled such huge steps forward. Huge investments and knowledge have been invested in the preparation of oils for the market, and all this has enabled the Extra Virgin Olive Oil "Istra" to gain protection at the European Union (EU) level. This mark of authenticity guarantees each consumer that all phases of production, processing, storage and bottling have taken place in Istria.

''The decision to brand Istria as a region which offers top agricultural products and not to choose quantity at the expense of quality proved to be a successful recipe. For the seventh year in a row now, we've had it declared that we've got the best olive oil in the world. Agriculture is a branch that requires a lot of hard work and investment, so my sincere congratulations and thanks go to all of Istria's olive growers. Istria County will continue to strongly encourage further development of this branch through the Fund for Development of Agriculture and Agrotourism of Istria, the construction of a public irrigation system, and projects and programmes implemented by the County Agency for Rural Development of Istria,'' said County Prefect Boris Miletic.

Istria has been declared the best olive growing region in the world for the seventh year in a row. This part of the country has taken on an important role and positioned itself as the second best olive growing region, just behind Tuscany. However, every year the advantage of Tuscany was smaller, and at the end of 2016, Istria took the leading position that it has maintained to this day.

For more on Croatian products, as well as olive oil from up and down the coast, make sure to check out Made in Croatia.

Tuesday, 14 July 2020

Croatian Olive Oil Impresses Once Again at London IOOC Competition

Croatian olive oil is among the very best in the world, and as Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 11th of July, 2020, for the second year in a row, the Ol Istria Olive Oil Selection won a gold medal in the quality category at the prestigious world olive oil competition London International Olive Oil Competitions, and in the same category Ol Istria Picholine oil won silver.

Thus, the Croatian olive oil from Agrolaguna returned from international competitions once again with awards that prove its continuous top quality and recognition on the world's olive oil scene. Namely, London's IOOC is one of the largest and most respectable competitions in all of Europe, and in the competition this year, a total of 657 olive oils from as many as 25 countries were registered. In the quality category in which Ol Istria oils won medals, as many as 511 oils competed.

"We always emphasise that the success of Ol Istria olive oils lies in the controlled process from the beginning to the end of production as well as the knowledge that is built into the processing - from olive groves through fruit to oil production. Agrolaguna produces an average of about 150 tonnes of extra virgin olive oil every year, and the share of extra virgin olive oil under the Ol Istria brand, which consists of a blend of varieties, in the total production of Agrolaguna, stands at 98 percent. In addition to numerous awards, a great confirmation of the quality of Istrian olive oils is the fact that it was recognised by the Italian "bible" of extra virgin olive oils, Flos Olei, which declared Istria the best olive growing region in the world five times in a row. However, what is even more important than the fact that the quality of our oils is again recognised by certified oleologists in international juries, the high level of quality of our oils is also recognised by our consumers,'' said Vlado Condic Galinicic, the director of Agrolaguna.

Otherwise, Agrolaguna has the largest olive grove in all of Croatia, spread over a total of 220 hectares and five locations by the sea where 65,000 olive trees grow.

"In addition to the fact that the olives are grown in excellent locations, the basis for our top quality extra virgin olive oil are the hand-picked and undamaged fruits which are processed within 12 hours after having been harvested. The Ol Istria brand received a certificate of controlled designation of origin for its extra virgin olive oil, ZOI Istra, which implies the strict control of olives having an exclusively Istrian origin, only selected varieties, processed in a short time at a maximum temperature of 27 °C and stored in controlled temperature conditions. Ol Istria Selection is an extra virgin olive oil obtained by selecting several olive varieties. In addition, all varieties have a specific taste, aroma and intensity, so that the oils, like wine, can be combined with different dishes,'' explained Milan Budinski of Agrolaguna.

For more on Croatian olive oil, follow Made in Croatia.

Saturday, 16 November 2019

Days of Olive Oil Sees Istrian Product Draw President's Praise in Vodnjan

Istrian olive oil and Dalmatian olive oil could hold an eternal battle when it comes to deciding just ''who'' is better. While both are excellent and have won awards, there's just something about Istrian olive oil that keeps the international praise rolling in, and the fifteenth Days of Olive Oil being held in Vodnjan, Istria, is drawing praise for Istria's golden liquid from no less than the Croatian President.

As Glas Istre/Danijela Basic-Palkovic writes on the 15th of November, 2019, the President of the Republic of Croatia, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović, opened the fifteenth edition of Days of Olive Oil - Giornate dell 'olio d'oliva novello yesterday, which will be held in Vodnjan until Sunday.

At this international event which is featuring more than 100 Croatian and foreign olive oil exhibitors, all lovers of top virgin oils will be able to taste the best products from not only Croatia but the wider region, and the variety and the rich offer will certainly be attractive to various consumer groups, as well as lovers of gastronomy and top products.

Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović said that olive is absolutely part of Istrian culture.

"Olive growing and olive cultivation have been being passed down, especially here in Istria, from people's very beginnings in this area. Olives connect us with the whole Mediterranean and its traditions, and olive oil is an important part of our identity. When I go to restaurants all over the world, everyone boasts about their oils, and I always bring them a bottle of our Croatian oil and I hope that this way we'll be able to spread the word about Croatian olive oil all over the world,'' said President Grabar-Kitarović.

''I try to encourage small and medium-sized enterprises that I believe are the foundation of our economy. I'd recommend everyone, especially olive growers, to promote olive oil a little more on the continent, because I'm afraid that people there are still not yet aware of what kind of gold we're producing,'' said Grabar-Kitarović.

She also stated that she has been following the development of olive growing for years, saying that Croatia can boast a huge shift in quality, but that there is still much work to be done on quantity.

Make sure to follow our dedicated lifestyle page for more.

Friday, 7 June 2019

Grubić Family Produce 6000 Bottles of Istrian Olive Oil Per Year

Croatian olive oil, particularly that from Istria, is known and respected worldwide as among the best on the planet. Having received numerous awards and recognitions, any lover of this golden liquid (the type that isn't beer, that is), should make sure to pay this stunning region of Croatia a visit.

As Lucija Spiljak/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 6th of June, 2019, in the very heart of olive oil heaven, also known as Istria, lies a sort of elixir of life - virgin olive oil. The Grubić family has been manufacturing and processing such olive oil for several decades and continues to introduce yet more new trends in this competitive industry.

The story of the olive oil made in Bale, Istria, dates back to 1927, as Emanuel Grubić, owner of the oil mill, told Poslovni Dnevnik, describing the date when the first "modern" oil mill was built, which remained in operation for a further 38 years.

It was eventually closed back in 1965, but the Grubić family halted its decay and dilapidation, purchased it and renewed it during the 1990's, and so preserved the rest of the line. There was no complete restoration, but the past and the future of Istrian olive oil and olive growing as a whole can be looked into further within the building's museum, which showcases old exhibits with stone mills, presses, hydraulic pumps and more.

There is also the modern Pieralisi olive processing plant. The museum and the new part are divided by a glass door, behind which lies the ''new'' olive oil experience.

Today, the family from Bale, Istria, deals exclusively with olive oil and cold processing, and they currently work to produce three different olive oil varieties.

"We haven't got large plants and industrial halls, we cultivate two varieties and we concentrate on the quality rather than on the quantity. On our eight hectares [of land], about 1,700 olive trees have been planted, from which ten farmers harvest up to 200 kilograms per day, manually, so that the fruits aren't damaged, as is the case with mechanical harvesting. We produce and sell up to 6,000 bottles a year. These are olives that are over 400 years old,'' Grubić stated, adding that they're also engaged in service activities and therefore process olive oil for their partners, too.

The taste and the top quality of their olive oil has been recognised abroad as well as here in Croatia; having been placed among the best extra virgin olive oils in the entire world, as well as earning other similar titles, numerous times.

Make sure to follow our dedicated Made in Croatia page for much more.