Every good thing must come to an end

Photo 6

Every good thing must come to an end and this applies to our project as well. The project Uncorking rural heritage: indigenous production of fermented beverages for local cultural and environmental sustainability has been one of the projects that has inspired people. Even though the start was rough due to Covid 19 restrictions, we managed to bring to realisation everything that we had planned and even more. The biggest challenge during the project was how to perform all the planned activities while the whole world was shut down? Only with hard work and diligent people we managed to fulfil all the obligations. The breaking point happened as soon as we managed to meet live for the first time. Even if we are living in digital era, we still need personal contact. Our project actually bloomed after the first live Consortium meeting in October 2022. And after that, all is history. 

” I took over the role of info-comm officer from my coworker in the middle of 2022 and immediately started breathing with the project. The people, the topic and the geographical areas that were addressed in the project are inspirational. We managed to visit all the involved countries and see the progress, the similarities and the differences, and learn from each other’s good practices. We are parting with a smile on our faces and with a fertile ground for future collaboration. I enjoyed working as an info-comm officer for this project and I look forward to similar tasks in the future. We managed to deliver articles for every issue of Regional Cooperation Magazine and still, even though the project is reaching its end, we have many topics to write about.” says Tanja  Dimitrijević, the European project Coordinator at the Municipality of Ajdovščina. 

Photo 1: Visiting Norway; Photo credit: Tanja Dimitrijević, Municipality of Ajdovščina; 

Photo 2: Project partners and the UNG students in Barovo, North Macedonia

Photo 3: Visiting the wine cellar and vineyards of the Faculty of Tourism and Rural Development of Požega, Croatia; Photo credit: Tanja Dimitrijević 

Photo 4: Project partners in Vipava Valley, Slovenia; Photo credit: Polonca Vodopivec 

Photo 5: Spring of Tourism, Vipava Valley, Slovenia; Photo credit: Tanja Dimitrijević

During the project we achieved several important results. We set up methods for the determination of aromatic compounds in wines and cider by gas chromatography at the University of Nova Gorica, as well as a sensory panel in Vipava and Požega. In addition, at the University of Nova Gorica, the existing teaching capacity was upgraded by the MiTeam platform. The Norwegian partners set up a Cider R&D Support Centre in Hardanger, which represents the first technical platform for monitoring the quality of Hardanger cider. To this end, a sensory panel for cider evaluation and laboratory protocols for the determination of chemical parameters was set up. A large-scale terroir study was carried out in North Macedonia with the characterization of vineyards and, by using digital technology, disease control monitoring in the vineyards as well as grape ripening monitoring were introduced. One of the project outcomes is the e-Tikves platform and the establishment of a soil analysis laboratory. The Faculty of Tourism and Rural Development purchased equipment for processing different clones of Graševina vine and analytical equipment, and the Municipality of Ajdovščina installed distillation equipment at the Brje Learning Centre (Photo 6). 

 The dissemination of the new gained knowledge was carried out in the form of various seminars and workshops for students and producers. Both faculties provided their students at first, second and doctoral level with the opportunity to participate in practical activities outside the regular curriculum that were carried out as part of the project. A number of exchange and educational visits were carried out in all 4 countries with the aim of transferring good practices.

This very partnership formed by different academic and research organisations, a cider producers’ association, local and regional authorities as well as a development agency has provided not only a solid basis for successful results of the project, but also a fertile ground for possible further cooperation in several fields, especially in the field of agriculture, tourism, culture. etc. The start of this collaboration is being reflected in new project ideas, one of which is the Agrotur+ project, where the Norwegian partners have presented their good cider production practices. 

Author: Tanja Dimitrijević, Municipality of Ajdovščina 


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here