Croatia claims true Teran is Istrian

Istrian wine producers have fought back following attempts by Slovenia’s agriculture minister and the European Union to preclude Croatia from using the Teran grape on labels.

‘True Teran is Istrian’. Picture from Wines of Croatia

Olivier Arman from Franc Arman, who is one of Istria’s top Teran producers, has been lobbying through broadcast media to retain Croatia’s right to use the grape on bottles of wine sold within the European Union, and has registered the words “Teran is Istrian” as a trademark (“Teran je Istriajan” in Croatian).

As previously reported by the drinks business, Slovenia registered “Teran” as a PDO in 2009 for wine from the Kras region near the country’s border with Italy.

Croatia failed to object to this at the time, but with its accession to the EU in 1 July, the country will have to abide by the union’s laws.

As a consequence, after July, unless the dispute is resolved between the two countries, any Croatian wine labeled Teran that is sold within its own borders, and within those of the EU, will be illegal.

Last week, according to James Waddell, managing director of Croatian Fine Wines in the UK, Slovenian authorities had already ordered Croatian wine labelled Teran to be removed from shops.

Commenting on the situation, he said, “The Slovenian’s Teran brand grab is a desperate attempt to disrupt and destroy the supply of the internationally recognised world class Istrian Teran producers, when Croatia enters the EU.”

Continuing he explained, “Teran is not a region or a process of production, it is an indigenous grape found in Istria and Northern Italy, not Slovenia, and used to make Teran wine… The true Teran is Istrian.”

Indeed, Teran from Slovenia is more commonly identified as being from the Refošk grape, which is actually believed to have a different DNA.

Providing evidence that Teran and Refošk are different grapes, Judith Burns from wine importer Pacta Connect said that she brings in wine from a single producer who makes wine from both grape varieties.

“There has always been a lot of confusion over Refošk and Teran, and many people think they are the same grape. But we have one winemaker, Piquentum, who makes a Refošk and a Teran and that proves that they are two very clearly defined grapes in Istria.”

She also explained, “As our winemakers tell us, the Slovenes use Refosco (or Refošk) to produce Teran. The Istrians use Teran to produce Teran. In the ten plus years that we’ve been visiting both countries actually we have rarely seen Slovenian Teran, but have widely seen Istrian Teran. We have two Slovene winemakers now in our portfolio, neither of which uses Teran.

Burns also pointed out that Slovenia tried to block Croatia’s accession to the EU in 2009, which is just one of many political disputes between the two countries. “It is not the winemakers who are having the argument,” she pointed out.

Should Croatia be banned from using the term Teran in the EU, Burns said that some high profile UK customers would have to remove Croatian wines from their shelves or cellars, including The Hotel du Vin group and Harvey Nichols.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe to our newsletters

Head of Sales and Marketing

The Lyme Bay Cider Co Ltd
UK

Brand Manager

Hatch Mansfield
Ascot, Berkshire

Southern Regional Account Manager

Speciality Drinks
England, UK

Northern Regional Account Manager

Speciality Drinks
England, UK

Fine Wine Buyer

FINE+RARE Ltd
London, UK

Awards Sales Executive – France

Decanter
London, UK

Sales Executive / Brand Ambassador

Elixir Distillers
London, UK

Brand Development Executive

Elixir Distillers
London, UK

Sales Administrator

Company details: Advised on application
London W1

London Account Manager

Speciality Drinks
London, UK

Pink Rosé Festival

Cannes,France
7th Feb 2019

Wine Paris

Paris,France
11th Feb 2019

IBWSS UK

London,United Kingdom
11th Mar 2019
Click to view more

The Global Fortified Masters 2018

Deadline : 25th January 2019

The Global Pinot Noir Masters 2019

Deadline : 1st February 2019

Click to view more

Rioja Masters 2018

View Results

The Global Beer Competition

View Results

Click to view more