So this is Zrno, the oldest organic
farm in Croatia, situated one hour away from Zagreb, the capital of Croatia,
in a small village called Habjanovac. Its area is about 20 hectares of land
under different types of crops and under different types of crop production and
management. The goal of our farm is to deliver
products that are made from the very raw ingredients from the field all
the way to the final product. There’s a bakery on site on the farm.
A sourdough bakery that makes like 20 kinds of pastry, 12 kinds of bread, There’s a processing unit that makes
different kind of fermented products, and of course there’s the the field
production, the grain production, vegetable production. In addition to that we have a
farm-to-table restaurant in Zagreb the capital that sort of works as a point of
synergy for all of those different production types, and a place where all
the different farm’s products come together to form a unique experience for
the guests and customers. this system gives us an opportunity to have
end-to-end control throughout all those modes of production resulting in a great
final product. There is also the chain of all organic
food stores Bio & Bio. In addition to that there’s Planetopija which is a
book publisher with a unique bookstore in the center of Zagreb with an eco gift
shop within its retail space. And there’s also Makronova, the education institute
specializing in educating people about healthy lifestyles, sustainability,
ecology, and so on. It was basically from this goal of educating people about sustainability, ecology, healthy lifestyles, that all the other activities,
including the stores, and ultimately the Zrno farm, and the production on its
premises, stems from. We are definitely committed to staying
true to the Organic Standards, staying true to the vegan standard, and
especially staying true to the local production in small batches. One of the challenges for our field
production is the fact that we have both the biointensive system and the
mechanized more regular sort of organic production. So we basically use both
systems at the same time to fulfill the demand that we have on the market, the
only challenges is that we have to actually manage both systems at the same
time, which is something that we are still developing the right formula to do
and it’s something that we hope to figure out in the next season.
There are 26 people working on the farm right now in different sort of segments
of the production, in multiple shifts, and with the addition of seasonal workers,
obviously, in the summer season. We really believe that the human component in
producing all of these products is something worth preserving, and
engaging the local community in making food for the future. We got the Greens Harvester about a year
and a half ago right as we started our bio intensive garden. We really see the
Greens Harvester as a symbol of the type of excellent products and innovation in
the market gardening and in the bio-intensive space. Our main motivation is a
strong belief that a healthy individual is a prerequisite for a healthy society. By producing food in the way that we do, locally, organically, in small batches… we
believe that we are producing food that is of excellent value for the individual,
and we believe that in that way, in some terms directly and sometimes indirectly,
we are promoting the development of a healthy society. I think that is our
primary motivation that gets us up in the morning and gets us through the day. I think farming can be a highly satisfying work. Obviously it’s incredibly demanding, both
physically and mentally, because we are always dealing with complex systems in
farming, there are no shortcuts, but in some way that mimics the way nature is,
and if we can overcome those challenges there’s an immense amount of
satisfaction waiting for anyone who pulls through.