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Thousands of free bean soup dished out in Croatian cities as May Day marked 

Thousands of free grah dished out in Croatian cities as May Day marked 

(Photo credit: Grad Osijek)

Croatians marked May Day, or International Workers’ Day, on Sunday with a public holiday that saw thousands turn out for traditional free lunches around the country.

The free lunch is a tradition in Croatia on 1 May with over 30,000 portions of free bean soup (grah) and 15,000 portions of štrukli served at the biggest event in the country at Maksimir Park in the capital Zagreb. 

There were free bean soup lunches also served in other cities, including Split, Rijeka and Osijek where over 2,500 portions were handed out. 

The May Day lunch is also a tradition in Osijek and along with each portion of bean soup, a piece of traditional Slavonian cake – gužvara – was prepared. 

Thousands of free grah dished out in Croatian cities as May Day marked 

(Photo credit: Grad Osijek)

A concert by the Tamburitza ensemble Žeteoci iz Tenje entertained the crowd that turned out. 

Thousands of free grah dished out in Croatian cities as May Day marked 

(Photo credit: Grad Osijek)

“We are celebrating International Workers’ Day this year with never better employment statistics. Unemployment is falling and employment is rising. Compared to March 2021, we have two percent more employees in the city, and as many as 20 percent fewer unemployed,” said Osijek Mayor Ivan Radić, before adding. 

“I am sure that these trends will continue in the future. We do everything we can. We have a really large number of investments in the city of Osijek, and we have relieved businessmen from paying the utility contribution, which I believe will attract investors and we will see these indicators in the future.” 

Thousands of free grah dished out in Croatian cities as May Day marked 

(Photo credit: Grad Osijek)

Bean soup is given out to all people as a symbol of a real workers dish and red carnations as a symbol of the blood of fallen workers from the 1886 Haymarket affair in Chicago. 

Thousands of free grah dished out in Croatian cities as May Day marked 

(Photo credit: Grad Osijek)

The date, 1 May, has also been known for anti-capitalist protests around the world.

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