After three years of working with Zagreb and Brussels, producers from the small island have received official protection for their mostly Oblica extra virgin olive oil.
Producers on the island, which sits a few kilometers off the coast of Dalmatia, began the process to receive formal recognition of their “Bračko olive oil” in August 2018, when the Agricultural Cooperative Supetar submitted a request to the Ministry of Agriculture.
According to the definition, PDO Brač extra virgin olive oil is obtained directly from the olive fruit (Olea europaea L.) exclusively by mechanical means. Furthermore, the indigenous olive variety Oblica must comprise at least 80 percent of the oil.See Also:Award-Winning Producer Says Croatians Need to Return to Their Traditional Roots
The oil is characterized by a low content of free fatty acids, low peroxide value and a high content of polyphenols.
Brač extra virgin olive oil has balanced bitterness, spiciness and fruitiness with an aroma of fresh olives, leaves and grass.
All the positive and specific characteristics of Brač olive oil are equally influenced by the olive variety, geological and climatic conditions and the skill of Brač olive growers and oil producers.
People have grown olives on Brač since ancient times. As a result, olives and olive oil have become part of the island’s culture and way of life.
As the island’s most historically significant agricultural crop, olives became synonymous with Brač and its most important olive variety, Oblica. In the World Catalog of Olive Varieties, the variety is even called Bračka.
Brač olive oil has a long, historical reputation, with continuous production on the island since the 16th century.
Despite this long tradition, producers have not been afraid to modernize, bringing in the latest agro-technical procedures and milling. This has led the island’s oils to be recognized at international olive oil quality competitions.
Overall, Croatia now has 33 agricultural and food products whose name is registered in the European Union as a PDO or a Protected Geographical Indication.