New York Times Features New Agricultural Hope for Croatia Near Zadar

Total Croatia News

November 23, 2017 – The New York Times reports on a potentially lucrative agricultural business near Zadar.

I must confess that I wasn’t really sure what immortelle was when my friend Jadran Lazic thrust a bunch of something into my hand one early morning on the top of Hvar, as we had gone to visit his beloved lavender fields. The owner of a fabulous plot of land on the top of Croatia’s premier island, complete with 950 olive trees and views to die for, young Jadran decided to do his little bit to restore a little fragrance to the Lavender Island, by planting 350 lavender bushes. You can see the video of this year’s harvest below.

The something in my hand was a bunch of St. John’s wort, according to my mother-in-law, but Jadran’s mind that day was on a curry plant called immortelle.

“I plan to plant all this area with immortelle,” he said, beaming with joy, for here was a man who had truly found his private paradise. 

I thought he was nuts. Lavender, I could understand, but a curry plant called immortelle? What would be the point of that?

And then I heard about a story the New York Times were doing on the immortelle industry near Zadar this summer, a story which was published yesterday. Jadran, it appears you are not nuts, but could be onto something. 

Meet a rather unusual new trend in Croatian agriculture, as told by The New York Times. 

“ZADAR, Croatia — For generations, residents of Zadar, an idyllic town on the Adriatic coast of Croatia, used the dry, stringy stems and yellow blossoms of a common variety of a wild daisy as kindling, mostly to singe the hair off pigs destined for the spit.

“But about five years ago, cosmetics manufacturers and the essential oils industry started using a rare extract from the flower — known as the curry plant for its spicy aroma — as a critical ingredient in high-end creams, ointments and tinctures, sold for their purported rejuvenating powers.

“So let the pigs shave themselves, local residents decided, turning their attention to gathering bushels of the once widely ignored weed, in hopes of creating a new local industry to add to an economy based on construction, fruit farming, olive oil and a touch of tourism.”

Read the whole story from Joe Orovic here.


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