TIRANA, October 8
The chestnut harvest season has started in Bujan village in Tropoja, a region that is home to the largest area covered with native chestnuts trees in Albania and in the Balkans. Most of the chestnuts are exported unprocessed. An average of 6,000 tons of chestnuts is exported annually mostly to Italy. The value of chestnut exports is estimated Euro 8 million per year.
Chestnuts are the only source of incomes for many families living in the remote areas of northern Albania. Every family in the area will work in chestnut harvesting for a period of two weeks, in order to collect and transport the produce before snowfall hits the region.
Tropoja’s chestnut groove covers an area of over 20 hectares in Dragobia and Bajram Curri.
The area is an interesting destination for the enthusiasts of outdoor activities. It borders with Thethi National Park and Gashi River Nature Reserve that is inscribed as part of the World Heritage Property ‘Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and the Ancient Beech Forests of Germany.
In the meantime, the highest number of branded products come from northern Albania. Businesses and farmers from this area have branded well-known products such as the chestnuts of Tropoja and Malesi e Madhe, also chestnut honey from both these areas, as well as blueberries from Tropoja and Kukesi highlands. All these products help the revitalization of production in rural areas, tourism development, new jobs, and more revenues from exported products.