Croatian Producers Celebrate NYIOOC Success as Results Continue to Roll Out

Croatian farmers and producers have earned the third-highest award total at the 2022 NYIOOC, improving upon last year’s results too.
Ivica Vlatković
May. 23, 2022
Nedjeljko Jusup

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Croatian olive grow­ers are already cel­e­brat­ing suc­cess at the 2022 NYIOOC World Olive Oil Competition, even as more results are announced each day.

We are third in the world [in terms of total awards],” Tomislav Duvnjak, owner of Vodice DOO in Dalmatia, who won two Silver Awards this year, told a net­work of local olive grow­ers. I hope we will endure to the end, and that this is the largest suc­cess so far.”

This year, pro­duc­ers from 28 coun­tries sub­mit­ted 1,240 sam­ples of extra vir­gin olive oil to the world’s largest olive oil qual­ity com­pe­ti­tion. So far, 468 Gold Awards and 225 Silver Awards have been given out.

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At the time of writ­ing, Croatian pro­duc­ers had earned a total of 93 awards (67 Gold and 26 Silver), with only Spanish and Italian pro­duc­ers earn­ing more with 140 and 111, respec­tively.

By com­par­i­son, Croatian pro­duc­ers earned the fourth-high­est total in the 2021 edi­tion of the com­pe­ti­tion, behind Italy, Spain and Greece, with 87 awards (67 Gold and 20 Silver).

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Over the years, Croatian par­tic­i­pa­tion has increased steadily and sharply, grow­ing from the first edi­tion of the com­pe­ti­tion in 2014 when just 13 sam­ples were sub­mit­ted to the record-high 112 sam­ples sub­mit­ted this year.

The sin­gle sharpest year of growth came in 2021 when 105 sam­ples were sub­mit­ted to the NYIOOC panel of judges, an increase of 75 per­cent com­pared to the pre­vi­ous year. The huge uptick was attrib­uted to a grass­roots orga­niz­ing effort in Dalmatia dri­ven by Duvnjak to help more grow­ers and pro­duc­ers par­tic­i­pate.

See Also:Best Olive Oils From Croatia

Along with a record-high num­ber of awards, Croatian pro­duc­ers have also achieved the high­est suc­cess rate of any coun­try that earned more than three awards at the com­pe­ti­tion, with 83 per­cent. Japan and New Zealand are the next high­est, with 75 per­cent each.

Awards are recog­ni­tion of the great effort and work,” said Domagoja Živković, who earned a Gold Award at the com­pe­ti­tion. But also an oblig­a­tion to con­tinue to improve because it is hard to stay on top.”

Ivica Vlatković, the pres­i­dent of the Zadar County Olive Growers Association who also earned two Silver Awards at the 2022 NYIOOC, added that the role tra­di­tion has played in the suc­cess of Croatia’s grow­ers and pro­duc­ers can­not be under­es­ti­mated.

The labor and work of Croatian olive grow­ers, our grand­fa­thers, was not in vain,” he said. Many of us built on their foun­da­tions, planted new olives and achieved suc­cess.”

Just as a Frech enol­o­gist once told him years ago when he asked about the suc­cess of French wine glob­ally, Vlatković said the secret is in the tra­di­tion.”

Because tra­di­tion is an exper­i­ment which lasts, is trans­ferred down the gen­er­a­tions and is per­fected,” he con­cluded.


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