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The past ten years have been marked by a dramatic development of olive growing in the Istrian peninsula, largely owing to the rediscovery of this plant, once grown almost along the entire coastline as a part of social and cultural life of its inhabitants. Various factors have caused a great loss of interest for olive over the past decades such as introduction of plants requiring simple cultivation and producing faster yield, disappearance of habits and lifestyle related to traditional culture associated with a progressive migration of rural inhabitants to other sectors of production, urbanization of agricultural areas, etc. These phenomena have considerably marked the development of a large number of industrialized countries in the aftermath of the Second World War, and yet, in Istria, a region that had always nourished firm bonds with its roots and traditions, people have never completely eradicated their interest in genuine and authentic tastes for fruits of the land - a combination of continental, Balkan, and Mediterranean tastes. Furthermore, some forms of far-sighted state incentives have also contributed to a true renaissance in the field of olive growing where the old methods are combined with new understanding and new techniques. For instance, rediscovery and newly planted autochthonous varieties of ancient origin is combined with earlier harvest which, as we are well aware, considerably affects the quality of oil at the expense of quantity.

Consequently, today in Istria we have high quality extra virgin olive oil; a fact confirmed by countless awards at the most renowned international competitions and by success of these oils both regionally and internationally.

Based on some rough estimates, the initial need requiring a serious and well-planned campaign geared at renovation of olive groves has resulted in the overly ambitious import of thousands of plants of non-autochthonous varieties (leccino, frantoio, etc.) that guaranteed instant success; constant and certain quantities and oils without too pronounced characteristics. On the other hand, recent attention has been focused on the return to valorisation of autochthonous varieties (buža, žižolera, rosulja), not only in terms of genetic research, plantation of new trees and similar, but also with respect to regenerating centennial trees that had been neglected for decades.

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