Olives have been part of Mediterranean culture from the dawn of civilisation, forming part of both the staple and gourmet diets of the inhabitants, representing a certain style of life and becoming a powerful spiritual symbol. Olives growing along the Croatian coastline have been enthused over and envied far and wide in the past, so there is no reason why they should not become part of the European future.
Croatia has a highly suitable ecological environment for the cultivation of olives and the production of high quality, virgin or extra vergine olive oil. The development of olive cultivation and the production of high quality olive oil by introducing new technology forms an important component in the structural development of Croatian agriculture.
High quality olive oil (extra vergine) is more and more sought after for its dietary and therapeutic value. During the last decade, the production and consumption of olive oil worldwide has increased by 12%. Increased demand and consumption of extra vergine olive oil is a particular feature of the countries of the European Union.
Since supply cannot match demand and demand continues to grow, the price of the best oils is rising steadily, with Croatian oil characterised by its first-class quality, taking its place among the best in the world. This is borne out by experience, so that fine, virgin olive oil from Istria is sold in advance to France or even Italy, which has its own developed cultivation of olives.