Fewer imports, more exports, better promotion, and increased domestic production and consumption of pršut (cured ham) are just some of the goals of the cluster of Croatian pršut producers, which will meet for the first time today in the Dalmatian town of Dugopolje.
The group, which is supported by the Croatian Chamber of Commerce, the Ministry of Agriculture and has members from 30 of Croatia’s most well known pršut producers, hope that their formation raises the level of education of both pršut consumers and retailers.
“We plan to raise the level of education of consumers, retailers and food service managers, and to increase domestic production of pršut in the next few years to at least a million pieces,” said one of the initiators of the cluster, Ante Madir from the Association of Dalmatian Pršut.
One of the main challenges hindering growth is the access of raw materials, with the struggling domestic pig production market low on resources, around 220,000 fresh pork legs are imported each year, import-duty free thanks to the governments blessing, in Croatia for curing. Producers in Croatia currently produce 350,000 registered pršut’s a year, with more than 600,000 imported pršut’s sold annually on the Croatian market.