Growing olives requires a Year-round dedication and work. Perfectly environmentally friendly and beneficial to human health olive oil can be obtained only by careful observation and prevention of all adversity and dangers that occur in the olive grove from the movement of vegetation to fruit ripening. Favorable climatic conditions are another important factor. Careful processing of olives into oil and proper storage of oil are further indispensable factors for obtaining top quality olive oil.
Šoltan olive growers pick their olives manually. Thus, only healthy and undamaged fruits are immediately selected for oil production. Collected juicy and fresh olives are transferred to one of the oil mills on the island for processing the same day, and the resulting olive oil is stored in stainless steel containers until poured into labeled bottles. All these actions take place completely and only on the island of Šolta, and only closed and labeled with protection of origin bottles are allowed to leave the island.
Olive groves are scattered all over the island of Šolta, all the way from the sea shore to the glades in the middle of the island. Olive trees were planted mainly on less valuable terrains, on rocky and steep glades. Although the varieties Oblica and Šoltana are the prominent ones, different microclimates on the island render its unique mark, which is why these oils have many different olfaction and gustation shades. The most interesting oils are the ones obtained from olive fruits harvested in several different locations! Organic production, which is manifested in the abandonment of the use of herbicides, pesticides and fertilizers, gives healthy fruits with a strong cellular structure. This is proven by numerous international awards for Šolta olive oil produced by mixing several different bio-oils of members of our Association. Commitment to quality at the expense of quantity, controlled production, packaging, sales and promotion combined with the variety of fragrant and tasty components in Šoltan olive oil, with unsurpassed aromas of Šoltanka variety, are responsible for playfulness and top quality of this perfect product. The production area of “Šoltan Olive Oil” is exclusively and guaranteed to be a small, rocky island of Šolta in central Dalmatia in front of the ancient city of Split.
Even nowadays it is not certain whether the Greeks or Romans brought an olive tree to Šolta or they found it here, cultivated it, and distributed it throughout the Mediterranean. We are convinced that the olive tree has always been a part of Šolta’s vegetation!
GUARANTEE OF EXCELLENCE
Šoltan olive oil has no additives, spices or oils from other fruits, it is pure juice from the olive fruit. Its production is controlled by an accredited Biotechnicon control station from Split starting already in the olive grove; it controls the production in the oil mill, storing the oil, and finally bottling and labeling.
Olive oil is protected by the European Union Protected Designation of Origin PDO. In addition to the Croatian inspections, the EU Commission’s control services supervise the production, storage, and quantities of olive oil produced, and additionally monitors organic production. The Presidency and the bodies of the Association make great efforts ensuring that each of the manufacturers do their best to provide a joint product of the top quality.
Special recognition and proof of quality are prestigious regional and international awards that have been awarded to Šoltan olive oil for many years: From 2012 to 2017, members of the Golden Šoltanka Association receive either a gold or silver medal: in 2017 New York gold medal at NYIOOC – world’s largest olive oil competition, in 2018 the CHAMPION title at the biggest regional olive oil competition “NOĆNJAK”, in 2019 the crown of all awards so far is the “BEST IN CLASS” New York title at the NYIOOC for the best eco-friendly, monosort (of only one olive variety – Šoltanka), medium intensity olive oil in the world .903 olive oil producers from 26 countries participated in this prestigious competition, and Croatian olive oils were extremely successful! These recognitions and awards are a guarantee of the continuous top quality of Šoltan olive oil.
OLIVE OIL – KNOWN SINCE ANTICA FOR ITS HEALING PROPERTIES
The health benefits of the Mediterranean diet have been known for years. It is an indispensable part in preparing most of the food in Mediterranean cuisine. It is most commonly used as a side dish and as such enhances the taste of the dish, while it facilitates the digestibility of certain foods. In the Mediterranean diet, olive oil is used as a substitute for other fats and oils, especially those saturated and hydrogenated, and it is never mixed with other fats. Nutritionists agree on one thing: olive oil is the king of oils. Of course, this means extra virgin olive oil, which is obtained by simply pressing and filtering healthy olives, while maintaining the content of beneficial ingredients as much as possible. The medicinal properties of olive oil have been well documented in the scientific literature. Intake of this ancient food provides protection against chronic degenerative diseases and is associated with a reduced risk of heart disease, cancer prevention, and a stronger immune system. Moreover, olive oil is recognized for its anti-inflammatory properties and protective effect on the gastric mucosa, and it contains unsaturated fatty acids, essential for brain activity, for maintaining thought and feeling processes, and for the smooth transmission of information in the brain. Olive oil is rich in fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K. Vitamin A is most important for vision physiology, protecting skin and mucous membranes from various infections and infectious diseases. It also has a beneficial effect on the heart and circulatory system. Olive oil contains the same substance as ibuprofen – oleocanthal. This bitterness-related substance has an anti-inflammatory effect, which is why good olive oil should also be bitter as it guarantees its healing and protective effects on the body.
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