Croatia’s Zadar County Celebrates NYIOOC Success in Official Ceremony

Local officials praised the efforts of olive oil producers who yielded eleven awards at the World Competition. Their success was attributed to hard work and cooperation.

Ivica Vlatković (left) and Božidar Longin
By Nedjeljko Jusup
Jun. 22, 2022 17:16 UTC
Ivica Vlatković (left) and Božidar Longin

Part of our con­tin­u­ing spe­cial cov­er­age of the 2022 NYIOOC World Olive Oil Competition.

Zadar county pre­fect Božidar Longin held a cer­e­mony in the homony­mous cap­i­tal city to con­grat­u­late local wine, cheese and extra vir­gin olive oil pro­duc­ers for their out­stand­ing results in a series of com­pe­ti­tions.

Encompassing north­ern Dalmatia and south­east­ern Lika, Zadar county is one of seven coastal coun­ties in Croatia branded as an offi­cial wine tourism des­ti­na­tion.

The awards from the com­pe­ti­tion are the best proof of how seri­ously and respon­si­bly they have approached breed­ing and pro­duc­tion, com­bin­ing tra­di­tion and new knowl­edge.- Božidar Longin, pre­fect, Zadar County

We have qual­ity,” Longin said. We also have respectable quan­ti­ties of top-qual­ity oils, wine and cheese, and now we should work on a stronger appeal to tourists.”

Wine pro­duc­ers from Zadar earned 12 awards at the recent Decanter World Wine Awards in London, and local cheese pro­duc­ers cel­e­brated their suc­cess in three inter­na­tional com­pe­ti­tions.

See Also:The Best Olive Oils from Croatia

Meanwhile, 10 olive oil pro­duc­ers earned 12 awards at the 2022 NYIOOC World Olive Oil Competition, the world’s largest olive oil qual­ity com­pe­ti­tion.

Overall, pro­duc­ers from Croatia earned 96 awards from 112 entries in the com­pe­ti­tion, the third-high­est total behind Italy and Spain. However, Croatia’s 86 per­cent suc­cess rate was the high­est of any coun­try that sub­mit­ted more than three entries.

In terms of per­cent­age of suc­cess and qual­ity, we are the best in the world,” said Ivica Vlatković, who won two Silver Awards at the com­pe­ti­tion and is the pres­i­dent of the Zadar County Olive Growers Association.

According to Vlatković, as many as 3,500 farm­ers grow olives on 2,580 hectares in the county. In addi­tion, there are 38 mills, which process about 800,000 liters of oil. Zadar also hosts two pan­els with 43 cer­ti­fied olive oil eval­u­a­tors.

The goal is to pro­duce, brand and sell qual­ity extra vir­gin olive oils at appro­pri­ate prices to ben­e­fit not only olive grow­ers but also con­sumers,” Vlatkovic said.

He believes Zadar and the rest of Dalmatia can fol­low the orga­ni­za­tional play­book set by pro­duc­ers in the north­west­ern Istria penin­sula to sys­tem­at­i­cally sign up farm­ers and millers to com­pete in the com­pe­ti­tion and assist them in test­ing their oils and financ­ing their entries.

Longin added that the awards result from the hard work and coop­er­a­tion among farm­ers, local author­i­ties and other insti­tu­tions.

The awards from the com­pe­ti­tion are the best proof of how seri­ously and respon­si­bly they have approached breed­ing and pro­duc­tion, com­bin­ing tra­di­tion and new knowl­edge,” he said. With such a com­bi­na­tion, suc­cess can­not be absent.”

According to Longin, agri­tourism is an excel­lent way to develop Zadar County’s rural areas sus­tain­ably. He added the county is sup­port­ing an increas­ing num­ber of new agri­tourism oper­a­tions.

Branding Zadar County as a gas­tro­nomic des­ti­na­tion is one of our goals, and it is not pos­si­ble with­out the pro­duc­ers of top extra vir­gin olive oils, wines and cheeses,” Longin said.

On behalf of the win­ners, Vlatković thanked the county for its efforts to sup­port agri­cul­tural pro­duc­ers.

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