Best Practices, Olive and oil supply chain in Montenegro (3rd part)

In parallel with the planting of new orchards, old, often ancient orchards are being revitalized with such dynamism that efforts under the last 10 years have led to the complete or partial revitalization of approximately 2/3 of all old (including ancient) olive trees (By bringing neglected olive groves to culture: by introducing agrotechnical measures of adequate pruning, fertilization, protection and harvesting).

New plantings are performed mainly with foreign varieties (Spain, Italy, Greece, Croatia), often with targeted positive characteristics (pollinators, increased and stable yields, positive sensory characteristics, resistance to drought, frost, etc.), which reflects the wishes and needs of investors , but also indicates a certain lack of certified seedlings of local varieties. Modest yields in recent years indicate that most new plantations are not yet in full production (a good portion is not yet in production at all), and persistent problems with alternative yields of local varieties dominating the assortment, and inefficient management practices in traditional orchards have resulted, combined with adverse weather conditions over the past few years, and pest infestations (olive flies), continuously modest results in oil production. Overall, the sector should begin to achieve more stable results in production and yield growth as new orchards mature and further action is taken. measures to revitalize old olive groves should lead to less yield variability and better yields.

In the context of the Common Agricultural Policy of the European Union, and the TRIPs of the World Trade Organization, there are numerous opportunities to introduce quality schemes as mechanisms to diversify production, create added value, and achieve increased competitiveness and market recognition. They serve as a market signal, and a quality control system that guarantees consumers and producers that in a specific way, and through documented processes and procedures, communicate to the market the specific benefits of products and services that carry these labels.

As a rule, these schemes, although not in themselves a guarantee of a more favorable market position and higher value, but are considered within the broader context of the production process, marketing mix and other elements of competition, in synergy, allow product success in the market. Crucially, research shows that protected products have a better chance of market success in countries where consumers are well aware of the benefits of quality schemes.

In general, and specifically relevant in the case of Montenegro, these schemes relate to the following:
• Products labeled organic production,
• Products with a protected geographical indication (GIs) – protection of the designation of origin (PDO), protection of the geographical indication (PGI), and protection of the traditional quality designation (TSG),
• Various national and regional quality schemes, such as Austrian quality, Swiss Made, Label Rouge, IQ – Istrian Quality and the like.

Extracted and reworked from the document: “Report on BPs on quality schemes and consumer Health in Montenegro”. The report is one of the deliverables under the activity ” Exchange and knowledge transferring of Best practices on quality schemes and consumer health ” WPT1 ”Improving the coss-border framework conditions for the valorization of the agri-food and fisheries value-chain” .

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