Friday, 19 February 2021

People also ask Google: What is Croatia Famous For?

February 19, 2021 – What is Croatia Famous For?

People outside of the country really want to know more about Croatia. They search for answers online.

Here, we'll try to answer the popular search terms “What is Croatia famous for?” and “What is Croatia known for?”

Most of the people looking for answers to these questions have never been to Croatia. They may have been prompted to ask because they're planning to visit Croatia, they want to come to Croatia, or because they heard about Croatia on the news or from a friend.

What Croatia is known for depends on your perspective. People who live in the country sometimes have a very different view of what Croatia is famous for than the rest of the world. And, after visiting Croatia, people very often leave with a very different opinion of what Croatia is known for than before they came. That's because Croatia is a wonderful country, full of surprises and secrets to discover. And, it's because internet searches don't reveal everything. Luckily, you have Total Croatia News to do that for you.

What is Croatia known for?

1) Holidays


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Croatia is best known globally as a tourist destination. Catching sight of pictures of the country online is enough to make almost anyone want to come. If you've heard about it from a friend, seen the country used in a TV show like Game of Thrones or Succession, or watched a travel show, your mind will be made up. Following such prompts, it's common for Croatia to move to first place on your bucket list. If it's not already, it should be, There are lots of reasons why Croatia is best known for holidays (vacations).

a) Islands


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What is Croatia famous for? Islands © Mljet National Park

Within Croatia's tourist offer, its most famous aspect is its islands. Croatia has over a thousand islands - 1246 when you include islets. 48 Croatian islands are inhabited year-round, but many more come to life over the warmer months. Sailing in Croatia is one of the best ways to see the islands, and if you're looking for a place for sailing in the Mediterranean, Croatia is the best choice because of its wealth of islands. These days, existing images of Croatia's islands have been joined by a lot more aerial photography and, when people see these, they instantly fall in love.

b) Beaches


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What is Croatia famous for? Its holidays are famous for their beaches © Szabolcs Emich

Croatia has 5835 kilometres of coastline on the Adriatic Sea - 1,777.3 kilometres of coast on the mainland, and a further 4,058 kilometres of coast around its islands and islets. The Croatian coast is the most indented of the entire Mediterranean. This repeated advance and retreat into the Adriatic forms a landscape littered with exciting, spectacular peninsulas, quiet, hidden bays, and some of the best beaches in the world. There are so many beaches in Croatia, you can find a spot to suit everyone. On the island of Pag and in the Zadar region, you'll find beaches full of young people where the party never stops. Elsewhere, romantic and elegant seafood restaurants hug the shoreline. Beach bars can range from ultra-luxurious to basic and cheap. The beaches themselves can be popular and full of people, facilities, excitement and water sports, or they can be remote, idyllic, and near-deserted, accessible only by boat. Sand, pebble, and stone all line the perfectly crystal-clear seas which are the common feature shared by all.

c) Dubrovnik


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What is Croatia famous for? Dubrovnik © Ivan Ivanković

As a backdrop to Game Of Thrones and movies from franchises like Star Wars and James Bond, Dubrovnik is known all over the world. Everybody wants to see it in person, and that's why it's an essential stop-off for so many huge cruise ships in warmer months. But, Dubrovnik's fame did not begin with the invention of film and television. The city was an autonomous city-state for long periods of time in history, and Dubrovnik was known all over Europe – the famous walls which surround the city of Dubrovnik are a testament to a desire to maintain its independent standing for centuries while living in the shadow of expanding, ambitious empires.

d) Heritage


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What is Croatia famous for? Heritage. Pula amphitheatre is one of the best-preserved Roman amphitheatres in the world

The walled city of Dubrovnik is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Croatia's rich architectural and ancient heritage. Diocletian's Palace in Split is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and still the living, breathing centre of life in the city (that people still live within it and it is not preserved in aspic is one of its most charming features and no small reason for its excellent preservation).

Having existed on the line of European defence against the Ottoman empire, Croatia also has many incredible fortresses and castles. The fortresses of Sibenik are well worth seeing if you're visiting Sibenik-Knin County and its excellent coast. A small number of Croatia's best castles exist on the coast, Rijeka's Trsat and Nova Kraljevica Castle is nearby Bakar being two of them. Most of Croatia's best and prettiest castles are actually located in its continental regions which, compared to the coast, remain largely undiscovered by most international tourists.

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Many spectacular castles in the country's continental regions are, for these parts, what is Croatia famous for

Pula amphitheatre (sometimes referred to as Pula Arena) is one of the largest and best-preserved Roman amphitheatres in the world. A spectacular sight year-round, like Diocletian's Palace, it remains a living part of the city's life, famously hosting an international film festival, concerts by orchestras, opera stars, and famous rock and pop musicians. Over recent years, it has also played a part in the city's music festivals.

e) Music Festivals


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What is Croatia famous for? Music festivals © Khris Cowley

There is a very good reason why the city of Pula leapt massively up the list of most-researched online Croatian destinations over the last decade. It played host to two of the country's most famous international music festivals. Though the music at some of these can be quite niche, the global attention they have brought to the country is simply massive. Clever modern branding and marketing by the experienced international operators who host their festivals in Croatia mean that millions of young people all over the world have seen videos, photos and reviews of Croatia music festivals, each of them set within a spectacular backdrop of seaside Croatia.

f) Plitvice Lakes and natural heritage


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What is Croatia Famous For? Plitvice Lakes, national parks and natural heritage

Known for its chain of 16 terraced lakes and gushing waterfalls, Plitvice Lakes is the oldest, biggest and most famous National Park in Croatia. Everybody wants to see it. And many do. But that's not the be-all and end-all of Croatia's stunning natural beauty. Within the country's diverse topography, you'll find 7 further National Parks and 12 Nature Parks which can be mountain terrain, an archipelago of islands, or vibrant wetlands.

2) Football


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What is Croatia famous for? Football. Seen here, Luka Modric at the 2018 World Cup © Светлана Бекетова

The glittering international careers of Croatian footballers Luka Modrić, Ivan Rakitić, Ivan Perišić, Mario Mandžukić, and others have in recent years advertised Croatia as a factory of top-flight footballing talent. They helped put Croatia football on the map with fans of European football. Football fans in Croatia have a very different perception of just how famous Croatian football is to everyone else in the world. If you talk to a Croatian fan about football, it's almost guaranteed that they will remind you of a time (perhaps before either of you were born) when their local or national team beat your local or national team in football. 99% of people will have no idea what they are talking about. The past occasions which prompt this parochial pride pale into insignificance against the Croatian National Football Team's achievement in reaching the World Cup Final of 2018. This monumental occasion brought the eyes of the world on Croatia, extending way beyond the vision of regular football fans. Subsequently, the internet exploded with people asking “Where is Croatia?”

Sports in general are what is Croatia known for

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Croatians are enthusiastic about sports and engage in a wide number of them. The difference in perception between how Croats view the fame this gets them and the reality within the rest of the world is simply huge. Rowing, basketball, wrestling, mixed martial arts, tennis, handball, boxing, waterpolo, ice hockey, skiing and volleyball are just some of the sports in which Croatia has enthusiastically supported individuals and local and national teams. Some of these are regarded as minority sports even in other countries that also pursue them. Croatians don't understand this part. If you say to a Croatian “What is handball? I never heard of that,” they will look at you like you are crazy or of below-average intelligence.

3) Zagreb


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What is Croatia famous for? Its capital city Zagreb is becoming increasingly better known

Over relatively recent years, the Croatian capital has skyrocketed in terms of fame and visitor numbers. Tens of thousands of people from all over the world now come to visit Zagreb each year. Its massive new success can be partly attributed to the rising popularity of international tourism in some areas of Asia (and Zagreb being used as a setting for some television programmes made in some Asian countries) and the massive success of Zagreb's Advent which, after consecutively attaining the title of Best European Christmas Market three times in a row, has become famous throughout the continent and further still. Zagreb's fame is not however restricted to tourism. Zagreb is known for its incredible Austro-Hungarian architecture, its Upper Town (Gornji Grad) and the buildings there, an array of museums and city centre parks and as home to world-famous education and scientific institutions, like to Ruder Boskovic Institute and the Faculty of Economics, University of Zagreb.

4) Olive oil


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What is Croatia famous for? Olive oil

Croatian olive oil is the best in the world. Don't just take out word for it! Even the experts say so. In 2020, leading guide Flos Olei voted Istria in northwest Croatia as the world's best olive oil growing region for a sixth consecutive year. Olive oil production is an ancient endeavour in Croatia, and over hundreds of years, the trees have matured, and the growers learned everything there is to know. Olive oil is made throughout a much wider area of Croatia than just Istria, and local differences in climate, variety, and soil all impact the flavour of the oils produced. Croatian has no less than five different olive oils protected at a European level under the designation of their place of origin. These and many other Croatian olive oils are distinct and are among the best you're ever likely to try.

5) There was a war here


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What is Croatia famous for? A relatively recent war left its mark on the country © Modzzak

Under rights granted to the republics of the former Yugoslavia and with a strong mandate from the Croatian people, gained across two national referendums, Croatia declared its independence from Yugoslavia in 1991. Yugoslavia was a multi-ethnic country, with each republic containing a mixture of different ethnicities and indeed many families which themselves were the product of mixed ethnicities. Ethnic tensions and the rise of strong nationalist political voices in each of the former republics and within certain regions of these countries lead to a situation where war became inevitable. The worst of the fighting was suffered within Croatia, Bosnia, and Herzegovina and the part of southern Serbia which is now Kosovo. The Croatian War of Independence (known locally as the Homeland War) lasted from 1991 – 1995. The Yugoslav wars of which it was a major part is regarded as the deadliest conflict in Europe since World War II. In many cases, this war pitted neighbouring houses or neighbouring villages against each other and sometimes members of the same family could be found on opposing sides. The war left huge damage on the country and its infrastructure, some of which is still visible. Worse still, it had a much greater physical and psychological impact on the population. Some people in Croatia today would rather not talk about the war and would prefer to instead talk about the country's present and future. For other people in Croatia, the war remains something of an obsession. If you are curious about the Croatian War of Independence, it is not advisable to bring it up in conversation when you visit the country unless you know the person you are speaking with extremely well. It is a sensitive subject for many and can unnecessarily provoke strong emotions and painful memories. There are many resources online where you can instead read all about the war, there are good documentary series about it on Youtube and there are several museums in Croatia where you can go and learn more, in Vukovar, Karlovac and in Zagreb.

6) Wine


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What is Croatia famous for? Its wine is some of the best you'll ever try © Plenković

Croatia is not really that famous for wine. Well, not as famous as it should be because Croatia makes some of the greatest wine on the planet. Croatian wine is only really famous to those who have tried it after visiting – you'll never forget it! A growing cabal of Croatian wine enthusiasts are trying their best internationally to spread the word about Croatian wine. However, there isn't really that much space in Croatia to make all the wine it needs to supply its homegrown demands and a greatly increased export market. Therefore, export prices of Croatian wine are quite high and even when it does reach foreign shores, these prices ensure its appreciation only by a select few. There's a popular saying locally that goes something like this “We have enough for ourselves and our guests”. Nevertheless, Croatian wine is frequently awarded at the most prestigious international competitions and expos. White wine, red wine, sparkling wine, cuvee (mixed) and rose wine are all made here and Croatia truly excels at making each. You can find different kinds of grape grown and wine produced in the different regions of Croatia. The best way to learn about Croatian wine is to ask someone who really knows about wine or simply come to Croatia to try it. Or, perhaps better still, don't do that and then there will be more for those of us who live here. Cheers!

7) Croatian produce


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Drniš prsut
is protected at a European level, one of 32 products currently protected in this way and therefore what is Croatia famous for © Tourist Board of Drniš

To date, 32 agricultural and food products from Croatia have attained protection at a European level. These range from different prosciuttos, olive oils and Dalmatian bacon, to pastries and pastas, honey, cheese, turkeys, lamb, cabbages, mandarins, salt, sausages, potatoes and something called Meso 'z tiblice (which took a friend from the region where it's made three days to fully research so he could explain it to me at the levels necessary to write an informed article about it – so, you can research that one online). While some prosciutto, bacon, sausages, olive oil and wine do make it out of Croatia, much of these are snaffled up by a discerning few of those-in-the-know. The rest, you will only really be able to try if you visit. And, there are many other items of Croatian produce which are known which you can also try while here

Truffles


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What is Croatia known for? Truffles © Donatella Paukovic

By weight, one of the most expensive delicacies in the world, truffles are a famous part of the cuisine within some regions of Croatia. They feature heavily in the menu of Istria, which is well known as a region in which both white and black truffles are found and then added to food, oils or other products. Truth be told, this isn't a black and white issue - there are a great number of different types of truffle and they can be found over many different regions in Croatia, including around Zagreb and in Zagreb County. But, you'll need to see a man about a dog if you want to find them yourself.

Vegeta


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What is Croatia known for? Vegeta

Having celebrated its 60th birthday in 2019, the cooking condiment Vegeta is exported and known in many other countries, particularly Croatia's close neighbours. It is popularly put into soups and stews to give them more flavour. Among its ingredients are small pieces of dehydrated vegetables like carrot, parsnip, onion, celery, plus spices, salt and herbs like parsley.

Chocolate


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What is Croatia known for? Chocolate is a big export© Alexander Stein

Though making chocolate is only around a century old in Croatia, Croatian chocolate has grown to become one of its leading manufactured food exports. Some of the most popular bars may be a little heavy on sugar and low on cocoa for more discerning tastes. But, lots of others really like it.

Beer


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What is Croatia famous for? Its beer is becoming more famous internationally © The Garden Brewery

The exploding growth of the Croatian craft ale scene over the last 10 years is something that is likely to have passed you by, unless you're a regular visitor to the country, a beer buff or both. Most of the producers are quite small and production not great enough to make a big splash on international markets. However, even within a craft-flooded current market, Croatian beer is becoming more widely known – in one poll, the Zagreb-based Garden Brewery was in 2020 voted Europe's Best Brewery for the second consecutive year

8) Innovation


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What is Croatia famous for? Pioneers, inventors and innovation. Nikola Tesla was born here

From the parachute, fingerprinting, the retractable pen and the tungsten filament electric light-bulb to the torpedo, modern seismology, the World Health Oganisation and the cravat (a necktie, and the precursor to the tie worn by many today), Croatia has gifted many innovations to the world. The list of pioneers - scientists, artists, researchers and inventors - who were born here throughout history is long. And, although innovation is not currently regarded as experiencing a golden period in Croatia, there are still some Croatian innovators whose impact is felt globally, such as electric hypercar maker Mate Rimac.

9) Being poor


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What is Croatia famous for? Being poor. Yikes!

The minimum wage in Croatia is among the lowest in Europe. Croatian language media is constantly filled with stories about corruption. There is a huge state apparatus in which key (if not most) positions are regarded to be politically or personally-motivated appointments. This leads to a lack of opportunity for Croatia's highly educated young people. Many emigrate for better pay and better opportunities. This leads to a brain drain and affects the country's demographics considerably (if it usually the best educated, the ablest and the youngest Croatian adults who emigrate). Many of those who stay are influenced by the stories of widespread corruption and lack of opportunity and are therefore lethargic in their work, leading to a lack of productivity. A considerable part of the Croatian economy is based on tourism which remains largely seasonal.

10) People want to live in Croatia


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What is Croatia famous for? People want to come and live here. No, really.

Yes, despite many younger Croatians leaving or dreaming of leaving and despite the low wages, many people who are not from Croatia dream about living here. Of course, it's an all too familiar scenario that you go on holiday somewhere and while sitting at a seafood restaurant in sight of a glorious sunset, having had a few too many glasses of the local wine, you fall in love with Miguel or however the waiter is called who served it and Miguel's homeland. But, with Croatia, this is actually no passing fancy, no idle holiday dream. People do decide to move here. And not just for the sunset and Miguel (nobody in Croatia is called Miguel - Ed).

Croatia may be known for being poor, but it also has one of the best lifestyles in Europe. That it's cafe terraces are usually full to capacity tells you something about the work to living ratio. Croatians are not just spectators of sport, many enjoy a healthy lifestyle. This informs everything from their pastimes to their diet. There are great facilities for exercise and sport, wonderful nature close by whichever part of the country you're in. You can escape into somewhere wonderful and unknown at a moment's notice. The country is well connected internally by brilliant roads and motorways, reliable intercity buses and an international train network. The tourism industry ensures that multiple airports across Croatia can connect you to almost anywhere you want to go, and major international airports in Belgrade and Budapest, just a couple of hours away, fly to some extremely exotic locations. There are a wealth of fascinating neighbour countries on your doorstep to explore on a day trip or weekend and superfast broadband is being rolled out over the entire country. This is perhaps one of the reasons Croatia has been heralded as one of the world's best options for Digital Nomads. In a few years, when we ask what is Croatia famous far, they could be one of the answers.

What is Croatia famous for, but only after you've visited

Some things you experience when you visit Croatia come as a complete surprise. Most would simply never be aware of them until they visit. They are usually top of the list of things you want to do when you come back to Croatia.

Gastronomy


fritaja_sparoge_1-maja-danica-pecanic_1600x900ntbbbbb.jpgGastronomy is only one of the things what is Croatia known for only after you've visited © Maja Danica Pecanic / Croatian National Tourist Board

Despite a few famous TV chefs having visited and filmed in Croatia over the years, Croatian gastronomy remains largely unknown to almost everyone who's never been to Croatia. That's a shame because you can find some fine food here. Croatia has increased its Michelin-starred and Michelin-recommended restaurants tenfold over recent years. But, perhaps the bigger story is the traditional cuisine which varies greatly within the countries different regions. From the gut-busting barbecue grills and the classic Mediterranean fare of Dalmatia to the pasta, asparagus and truffles of Istria to the sausages and paprika-rich stews of Slavonia and the best smoked and preserved meats of the region, there's an untold amount of secret Croatian gastronomy to discover.

Coffee


restaurant-3815076_1280.jpgWhat is Croatia known for? Well, to locals, it's famous for coffee - not just a drink, it's a ritual

Croatians are passionate about coffee and about going for coffee. It's a beloved ritual here. Going for coffee in Croatia is often about much more than having coffee. It's an integral part of socialising, catching up and sometimes being seen. It doesn't always involve coffee either. Sometimes, you'll be invited for coffee, only to end up ordering beer. It's not about the coffee. Although, the standard of coffee in Croatia, and the places where you drink it, is usually really good.

The misapprehension: What is Croatia known for (if you are a Croatian living in Croatia)

Handball, music

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Wednesday, 3 February 2021

Croatian PM Andrej Plenkovic Gifted Special Edition Vegeta On Factory Visit

February 3, 2021 – Mr Plenkovic smiled warmly as he was presented with a special edition Vegeta carton, which replaced the face of its famous chef's mascot with his own. He was on a visit to the makers of the world-famous condiment

When it comes to Croatia's most-famous brands, the cooking condiment Vegeta is pretty much at the top of the tree. Its instantly-recognisable blue packaging and iconic chef's head mascot can be seen at supermarkets across much of the world. No wonder, then, that Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic smiled warmly and laughed when presented with a special edition Vegeta carton, which replaced the face of its famous chef's mascot with his own.

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The Croatian Prime Minister was on a visit to the Koprivnica-based makers of the world-famous condiment when he was presented with the special edition Vegeta. The gift was donated to him by the management of Podravka, the company that makes Vegeta.

Mr Plenkovic's visit actually took place some time ago, but the picture of the presentation of the special edition Vegeta only came to light on Tuesday 2 February 2021 when published in danica.hr, after it had appeared in the Podravka factory newsletter.

The iconic Vegeta chef, who has what some might describe as a 'French moustache', has been the mascot of the most famous exported Croatian food product for many decades. He was put on the packaging way back in 1964 and has been a featured part of Vegeta packaging ever since.

vegeta-40image.jpgVegeta packaging through the years, with the ever-present 'French chef' mascot © Podravka

The Vegeta condiment celebrated its 60th birthday in 2019. Vegeta was first devised in 1959 at the food laboratory of Podravka by a team led by Professor Zlate Bartl. In Koprivnica, where it was first made. they call it Podravka's loose gold because Vegeta was the fastest-selling product of the company in its early years and the main reason for the rapid development of the company. Vegeta is popularly put into soups and stews to give them more flavour. Among its ingredients are small pieces of dehydrated vegetables like carrot, parsnip, onion, celery, plus spices, salt and herbs like parsley.

Monday, 4 January 2021

Strongest Croatian Brands Survived and Succeeded After Independence

January 4, 2020 – A map showing production across the former Yugoslavia details the sustained prosperity of many Croatian favourites as some of the strongest Croatian brands are shown not only to have survived but have succeeded following independence

Media across Croatia, Bosnia and Serbia have surprised younger readers and reminded older readers with the publication of a map detailing production in the former Yugoslavia. While this trip down memory lane has caused a range of reactions across the countries of the former republic, looking at the map from a purely Croatian perspective gives some enlightening information. Namely, many of the strongest Croatian brands visible on the map are recognisable today. Some of the strongest Croatian brands not only survived independence but have since grown.
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Bajadera - one of the most popular products made by Zagreb-based chocolate and confectionery manufacturers Kraš

Zagreb-based chocolate and confectionery manufacturers Kraš, Požega-based confectionery and drinks manufacturers Zvečevo, oil company INA, Koprivnica-based food company Podravka and Koprivnica-based pharmaceuticals company Belupo, vitamin drink Cedevita, Varaždin-based food company Vindija, Vukovar shoemakers Borovo, Varaždin clothes designers and manufacturers Varteks and multi-use condiment Vegeta are just some of the strongest Croatian brands that are present on the map. You are still likely to see these brand names on many Croatian high streets. Some have succeeded in reaching further into international markets since Croatian independence.

1440xauto_1474445556Vegeta_SAD_1_kg.jpgCroatian-made condiment Vegeta is sold all over the world

Of course, not every brand visible on the map of Yugoslavia production has fared so well. In their coverage of the map, Ri.portal reminds that “Some of the Yugoslav products were used by literally the whole world - ships, cars, planes, trucks, weapons and even computers were produced... However, many of these companies no longer exist or are bankrupt.”

In their coverage of the map, Bosnian website Klix reminds that Croatian shipyards Uljanik in Pula and 3 Maj in Rijeka were at world level and produced large ships for customers from all over the world. Split-based shipyard Brodosplit, which can also be seen on the map, survives to this day.
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Croatian vitamin drink Cedevita comes in a range of flavours

Ri.portal goes on to remember that Yugoslavia was one of only five countries in Europe at the time that manufactured its own computers. “Probably the most famous is the Galaxy, while the first computer produced was the CER-10,” they say. One of the Yugoslav computer makers on the map, popular in the late 1970s, was Digitron, based in Buje in Istria.

Sadly, not all of the strongest Croatian brands have made it until today. Famous tractor and agriculture equipment manufacturer Tomo Vinković of Bjelovar is no longer in production. Their famously-reliable machines are much in-demand on the secondhand market. Two new tractor manufacturers, Hittner doo and the Prima tractor factory still make tractors in Bjelovar.

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Tuesday, 28 January 2020

Vegeta Continues to Ride on Tracks of Success - Vegeta Revives HZ Train

January the 28th, 2020 - Who still remembers the famous fast Podravka train that has been running from Osijek to Zagreb for many years now? Julijana Matanovic also wrote about it, and many travellers dreamed of the soft seats and the friendly conductors who dealt with the tickets with a smile on their faces. Last week, Podravka's most famous brand - the beloved Vegeta - celebrated its sixtieth anniversary.

The guests were taken on a rail journey covering six decades (though the train - however, arrived faster) on the route from Zagreb to Koprivnica, and each of the four specially designed wagons presented a part of the past and the development of this incredibly successful product which is sold worldwide, from Australia to China and all the way to Russia.

Vegeta is present in more than fifty countries, and with their sales abroad, they generate more than sixty percent of their revenue. With their specialities and gastronomic highlights, important guests from the world of politics and business joined forces with Stevo Karapandz, the patron saint of Podravka's cult show, "The Little Secrets of the Great Masters of the Kitchen."

When the train arrived at the railway station in Koprivnica without delay and blew its whistle - it was time to go back to 1959 and see the old Juha (soup) and Vegeta factory, from where Vegeta set out on its great journey around the world.

At this point exactly six decades ago, the most recognisable Croatian brand embarked on its journey, and over the course of its now sixty years of existence, Vegeta has become an indispensable part of cuisines on five continents, in more than fifty countries around the world.

''Vegeta generates over half a billion kuna of newly created value each year to the Croatian economy, and thanks to its results, we have created and continue develop the whole of Podravka as a brand. Therefore, with Vegeta's sixtieth birthday, we would like to pay tribute to Professor Zlata Bartl, her team, and generations of Podravka's people who have built this planetary success for six decades with their knowledge, diligence and love,'' said Marin Pucar, CEO of Podravka, emphasising that Vegeta is rightly placed side by side with Croatian athletes and the beautiful Croatian coast as part of a national image, which is well known throughout the world.

But that is not all! The Croatian Design Society opens in Zagreb on the Night of the Museums (Nov muzeja), on January the 31st, 2020, with the exhibition "Vegeta 60 - A package of history: Vegeta's design and evolution from 1959 to 2019", an overview of six decades of the graphic and packaging design of this famous product in the curatorial concept of Drazenka Jalsic Ernecic. It will present archival material, photographs, old commercials, clips from the legendary ''Little Secrets of the Great Masters of the Kitchen'' and texts that bring to life the story of the brand that generations have lived with.

The museum story of Podravka and Vegeta's industrial heritage is not only a story of packaging and graphic design and redesign, or of the brand's development and evolution, but has a far deeper symbolic meaning as a story of space, time, people, research, idea development, innovation, creation, emotion, rethinking and an analytical approach,'' Jalsic Ernecic pointed out in the foreword of the exhibition.

Vegeta, happy birthday to you!

Follow our Made in Croatia page for more on Croatian products.

Tuesday, 17 December 2019

10 Popular Croatian Dishes Powered by Vegeta

December 17, 2019 - Vegeta, one of Croatia’s most recognizable brands, celebrates 60 years.

I have to be honest - when the TCN boss came up with the idea to share ten Croatian recipes powered by Vegeta in honor of the brand’s 60th birthday, I was a bit thrown off guard. “Isn’t Vegeta in every Croatian dish?” 

At least that’s what I grew up believing, considering Vegeta always seemed to be the secret ingredient to all of my mother’s best dishes. You could find the Vegeta right next to the olive oil, salt and pepper in my house; it was and remains a staple in our kitchen and the kitchens of Croatians around the world. 

This powerful seasoning is crafted with carefully selected aromatic herbs and spices and is used to add some mood to your food. Vegeta is so diverse, it can pep up anything from pasta to pašteta or paprikaš to peka. It gives life to a basic brudet and spices up the simplest soups. Vegeta is a friend of fish and a foe to no one. It is the trump card of Croatian chefs and will go down in history as one of Croatia’s biggest victories. 

Thus, to help mark Vegeta’s 60th birthday, we’re bringing you 10 Croatian recipes fuelled by this powerful ingredient, courtesy of the Vegeta brand itself.

Beef medallions made the Dalmatian way (Juneći medaljoni na dalmatinski): This simple meat dish adds a touch of Dalmatia, a tablespoon of Vegeta, and thick slices of skuta cheese. 

Stuffed pancakes a la Sarma (Punjene palačinke á la sarma): This recipe marries the best of both worlds by fusing two beloved Croatian dishes - pancakes and sarma, into one great meal.  One spoonful of Vegeta Maestro Kim does the trick. 

Zagorje Potato Soup (Zagorska juha od krumpira): Hailing from Croatia’s northern parts, this hearty potato soup combines a variety of Vegeta’s products, dried bacon, and sour cream. 

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Vegeta

Holiday soup with dumplings (Blagdanska juha s gris – knedlama): A staple at most Croatian lunches, be it during the holidays or not, is clear broth soup, usually made from chicken or beef. Many households dress it up with dumplings, though it would be nothing without two spoonfuls of Croatia's secret weapon.

Zucchini fritters (Popečci od tikvica): I always looked forward to zucchini season as our dinner table abounded in my favorite fritters. A dish I watched my baba make as a child and my mother as a quick dinner fix as I grew older, our favorite seasoning takes simple fritters to the next level.

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Vegeta

Chicken Pâté (Pašteta od pilećih jetrica): With pašteta already so easy to acquire on Croatian supermarket shelves, why would anyone bother making it themselves? Well, this way, you can add a dash of Vegeta - and this recipe boasts a fancy New Year’s Eve touch.

Orada with potatoes and scallions (Orada s krumpirom i mladim lukom): A grilled fish dish so good you’ll never look back. Orada is readily found along Croatia’s coast, usually served with potatoes and Swiss chard. This recipe may add a twist with the scallions, but the star ingredient is no surprise.

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Vegeta

Stuffed Peppers (Punjene Paprike): If you skipped this on your Croatian holiday, then you haven’t been to Croatia at all. Usually served over piping hot mashed potatoes soaked in the pepper’s sauce, this Croatian classic is a summer standard.

Brudet: Another favorite enjoyed along Croatia’s coast is brudet - a stew made of a mix of fish, olive oil, vinegar, tomato sauce, and wine. Brudet is often served on a bed of polenta to ensure you soak up every last drop. 

White Cod (more commonly known as Bakalar na bijelo): The key to a Croatian Christmas is bakalar, or cod fish. Prepared in two ways, ‘red’ or ‘white’, this recipe opts for the bianco version, boasting plenty of potatoes, garlic, and olive oil.

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Vegeta

Vegeta is sold in 50 markets globally. Get out to get it now!

To read more about lifestyle in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page.

Tuesday, 17 December 2019

60th Anniversary of Vegeta Spice Celebrated

ZAGREB, December 17, 2019 - A ceremony marking 60 years of production of internationally renowned Croatian spice brand Vegeta was held in the Podravka company in Koprivnica on Monday.

In attendance were Prime Minister Andrej Plenković and Parliament Speaker Gordan Jandroković as well as numerous ministers.

Plenković congratulated the hosts "on Vegeta's first 60 years," saying that the spice, aside from being part of Podravka's identity, was also part of everyone's everyday life.

"I also congratulate Podravka on its excellent business results as well as on your employees' excellent salaries," he said, praising the quality of Podravka's other products.

Jandroković said the 72-year-old Podravka was the pride of the Croatian economy. "It adapts to global trends and is also an innovative company," he said, recalling that the company with 1,800 employees had a line of as many as 1,000 products.

Speaking of Vegeta, Podvarka Board chairman Marin Pucar said it was invented by professor Zlata Bartl and her team. "It was such a big invention that even global multinational companies, after Podravka, decided to launch similar products."

Vegeta is Croatia's most successful brand and is sold on 50 markets around the world.

More news about Podravka can be found in the Business section.

Saturday, 6 July 2019

Vegeta Celebrates 60 Years by Upgrading Design

July 6, 2019 - For its 60th birthday celebration, Vegeta invited its consumers to become part of the brand’s history by taking part in a competition to create a unique Vegeta label. The winners of the competition, the 60 best-designed labels, were presented by a six-member jury on Thursday at the renowned Adriatic Grašo restaurant in Split.

Krunoslav Bešvir, director of Podravka's Business Culture Program, revealed interesting stories from the 60-year history of Vegeta and presented a birthday campaign titled "Vegeta! 100% Original! 100% Mine!":

“A 60th birthday is the ideal opportunity to freshen up the exterior because just as Vegeta encourages creativity in the kitchen, we also wanted its users to test their creativity by creating a label for its packaging."

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Marinka Akrap, Director of Corporate Marketing and Communications of Podravka, presented the outstanding results of the campaign.

“We are delighted by the responsiveness of our consumers and the creativity they have shown in the design of the label. Over a month, more than 32,000 design proposals were received. 

Conducted in the markets of Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and North Macedonia, the competition saw applications from Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Finland, Germany, France, Ireland, Italy, Slovenia, USA, Netherlands, Switzerland, Sweden, Kosovo, Canada, Greece and Norway.”

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"Vegeta looks better than ever," said Davor Bruketa, Creative Director of the Bruketa&Žinić&Grey agency, expressing satisfaction with the design creations from all over the world, allowing users to express themselves creatively.

Aleksandar Šekuljica and Ivan Tandarić of the fashionable ELFS said: "Since design is our livelihood, it was a pleasure to review and evaluate the works and we believe that we have really chosen the best. Additionally, through designing T-shirts with the elements of the Vegeta, which are parts of our new collection, we have been allowed to give Vegeta a vision as a brand.”

Petar Grašo recalled that Vegeta accompanied him through life:” "Although lately, due to numerous obligations, I do not have time to cook as before, whenever I use Vegeta it is a safe road to deliciousness, so I am very pleased to join forces in the future and to work together on new projects.”

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The creators of the 60 best-designed labels will be particularly rewarded, and all of the design proposals received in the competition will be printed on the jars and on sale from October in the markets covered by the birthday campaign.

You can find the list of winners here.

To read more about lifestyle in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Sunday, 11 November 2018

Podravka Delivers Record Results Despite Agrokor's Problems

When Marin Pucar took over Podravka back in February last year, he comically stated, "Once you go Podravka, you're always Podravka!"

As Marina Sunjerga/VL/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 11th of November, 2018, Pucar experienced returning to the large domestic food company, at which he worked for twelve years, very emotionally. Pucar also has many goals and plans set up for the huge company to aim for.

Pucar's big plans for Podravka were soon realised because the Koprivnica-based food company achieved net operating profits of a massive 186 million kuna during the first nine months of 2018, which is the best result and the highest operating profit in Podravka's long history. These sparkling financial results saw employee salaries increase by 1000 kuna and the company get closer to reaching its goal of being a food business consolidator in Croatia, these praiseworthy achievements brought Pucar to his very well-deserved nomination for businessman of the year for 2018.

It is also important to point out his engagement in resolving the crisis in Agrokor from his position as the president of the association of Agrokor's suppliers, which acted uniquely to protect the interests of domestic companies.

''Podravka is a very good company'', said Pucar when he came to the head of the company, but added that it can and should be better because Podravka is much more than just its numerous brands and products.

In just a year and a half of his mandate, Marin Pucar has achieved excellent results with his team. He announced Vegeta's strong development, involving a wide range of products. In his vision and strategy, Vegeta will be branded completely with the culinary field, and all kinds of dishes.

''That's the aim, if we succeed, and we believe that we will,'' Pucar said in an interview for Večernji list.

''We'll secure Vegeta for another hundred years, and add new, additional value for Podravka,'' added Pucar.

Among the priorities, Pucar also emphasised the improvement of the rights and the material conditions of employees as the company's most valuable resource. ''Without satisfied workers, there can be no successful company,'' Pucar said. Namely, The salaries of the lowest paid employees in Podravka will increase by about 1000 kuna a month, which is one of the moves other entrepreneurs must follow if they truly want to retain quality workers.

The lowest wage in Podravka now amounts to 4,000 kuna per month. Through a collective contract, Podravka's employees have been granted a jubilee reward, and the company will pay them 1000 kuna per year for voluntary pension savings, which will eventually provide them with larger pensions when they retire. One of the goals that Pucar has set in front of him is, as stated, to position Podravka as a consolidator for the food industry, as well as the generator of the development of domestic agricultural production.

Accordingly, the company is expanding its cooperation with subcontractors and domestic OPGs to ensure that by the year 2022, its global brands such as Vegeta are secure. To achieve this goal requires a two to three year investment cycle, but the capacities needed by Podravka are sufficient to trigger a serious segment of Croatian agriculture. Part of the financing of these investments was secured by the company from EU funds.

Podravka itself has an impressive investment potential of around 200 million euro, so new acquisitions could realistically be expected. The company's presence on numerous traditional markets such as that of Poland, Hungary, and Russia, is set to increase. Pucar also played an important role in the rehabilitation of the formerly ailing Agrokor Group from the position of the president of the Association of Agrokor's suppliers.

The challenge was to protect and preserve the rights and interests of Agrokor's suppliers, while at the same time not compromise the position of Agrokor, and Agrokor's giant Konzum as the largest domestic retail chain. Unlike various other companies, Podravka didn't stop its deliveries to the then suffering Konzum, thereby confirming its responsibility for the continuation of Konzum's operations and the preservation of jobs.

The successful running of this extremely complex process resulted in the stabilisation of Agrokor's operations, a large part of the Croatian economy, and the preservation of Agrokor's supplier stability.

Otherwise, Pucar has spent most of his career in the food industry. He started his professional career at Gavrilović back in 2001, and one year later, he was in Podravka's meat industry, Danica, where he was the director of sales, marketing and development. He quickly moved to Podravka's high position of director for the Croatian market, and from 2008 to 2012, he was a member of the management of the company.

After five years with Podravka, he went to Zvečevo, which he led before returning as Podravka's main man.

Want to keep up with more news like this from Croatia? Make sure to follow our business page.

 

Click here for the original article by Marina Sunjerga/VL on Poslovni Dnevnik

Saturday, 27 October 2018

Sandra Perković Becomes Ambassador for Vegeta Natur

Sandra Perković meets Podravka. Linking Croatian companies and Croatian athletes is important for the overall strengthening of the image of Croatian products across the world.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 26th of October, 2018, one of the best Croatian athlete of all time, Sandra Perković, and the president of Podravka's board, Marin Pucar, signed an agreement on cooperation by which Sandra Perkovic becomes the ambassador of Podravka's products under the brand Vegeta Natur. The agreement was signed on Thursday, October the 25th, during Croatian Tourism Days (Dani Hrvatskog Turizma) held on the island of Hvar, under the organisation of the Ministry of Tourism of the Republic of Croatia, the Croatian National Tourist Board (HTZ) and the Croatian Chamber of Commerce (HGK).

"We're proud that our most successful athlete of all time, Sandra Perković, has joined the Podravka family. It's a great pleasure to bind ourselves to the best ones [athletes] who share in Podravka's important values such as valuable work, setting high goals, and the pursuit of excellence. These are the foundations of Sandra's best achievements, but also of Podravka's successful business,'' Podravka's Marin Pucar said during the signing of the Contract on cooperation, adding his desire for Sandra to take the title of the best athlete of the world this year, as she so deserves.

''I've grown up with Podravka's products and I'm glad I'm able to pass on the message about the quality and the value of these products to others through my work and my sporting activities. Connecting Croatian companies and Croatian athletes helps to promote Croatia's top-quality products across the world,'' stated Sandra Perković.

With its numerous brands and products, Podravka is present on more than sixty international markets.

Vegeta, as the original Croatian product, has become somewhat of a culinary phenomenon. In its almost six decades of existence, Vegeta has entered into the kitchens of consumers all over the world. In line with the trends on the culinary market, Vegeta has been being continuously upgraded throughout the years, and now we have Vegeta Natur.

Vegeta Natur products are enhanced with new recipes, which include a combination of carefully selected vegetables and spices with the message which bear the message ''by Mother Nature's recipe''.

During the Days of Croatian Tourism event was a panel called "Croatia - small country, big brand", in which Davor Bruketa, Jadranka Primorac, Aleksandar Dojčinović, Kristijan Staničić, and Božo Skoko participated along with Marina Pucar and Sandra Perković. Marin Pucar pointed out that Croatia's popularity in terms of tourism and sport should also be transferred into other spheres of the country's wider offer, particularly in terms of strengthening the image of Croatia's many top quality food products across the world.

For the latest news about Olympian champion Sandra, follow the TCN page here.

Saturday, 9 June 2018

Clouds With Silver Linings: Success Stories of Most Powerful Croatian Brands

Just how did branding help some of the most powerful and recognisable Croatian labels develop cult-like status on the global market?

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