Three new producers operating in the UNESCO Global Geopark of Novohrad-Nógrád received the diploma on the international local product trademark GEOfood on March 30, 2022 in the ceremonial hall of the Nógrád County Municipality.
The awards were presented by the geologist of the Novohrad-Nógrád Geopark, Péter Prakfalvi, and the clerk of the Nógrád County Municipality, József Bagó.
József Bagó at the ceremony
In his greeting, József Bagó emphasized that the most important goal is to continue cooperation and further joint work between the geopark, the county government and local entrepreneurs in order to strengthen the local economy. The municipality continues to pay close attention to the promotion of products produced by primary producers and local businesses in the county and to the widest possible range of local products in the tourist offer.
Júlia Nagy, the managing director of Innotime Hungary Kft
Júlia Nagy, the managing director of InnoTime Hungary Kft and the volunteer coordinator of the GEOfood brand at the geopark, emphasized the goals of the GEOfood brand: GEOfood is a brand of sustainable local foods that come from a unique geological area. However, GEOfood is not just a brand, but a philosophy that UNESCO Global Geoparks want to bring the consumer closer to those who produce their food, all by strengthening local communities in the name of sustainable development. She stressed that the most important task is to find the points of connection where producers and consumers find each other and where aspects of economic and social sustainability meet. Launched by Magma Geopark, the GEOfood program aims to introduce the brand to at least 30% of UNESCO’s global geoparks by the end of 2023 and to at least 10% of geoparks in the rest of the world by 2025.
The professional rapporteur of the local government, Bálint Murányi a 'Take the products of Nógrád!' presented a program that provides an opportunity for producers and consumers in Nógrád to get to know each other. So far, the services of 80 producers can be selected on the website www.veddanogradit.hu and they are working on launching a webshop for further development, while on their Facebook page they provide continuous information about producer days and other local product events organized in the county, and give producers the opportunity to introduce themselves in the local media.
Zoltán Oláh, the executive chef of the GEOfood branded Mikszáth Restaurant (Hotel Castellum)
Last year, 2 restaurants in Nógrád earned the trademark, which is also significant because there are a total of 24 GEOfood restaurants in the world. One of them is the Restaurant of the Castellum Hotel Mikszáth, whose chef, Zoltán Oláh, emphasized that all the ingredients in their restaurant come from Hungary, including 70% of the ingredients from the region. The hotel not only offers local ingredients for breakfast, but also makes sure that local products are included in the minibars of the rooms, and is constantly looking for partnerships with producers of high-quality local products in the area.
After the restaurant of Szent Jakab in Mátraverebély-Szentkút, which won a trademark in 2021, and the restaurant of the Castellum Hotel Mikszáth in Hollókő, three people have now received the GEOfood recognition in the first round of judging in 2021:
Viktorné Benedek Boglárka
As a primary producer, Viktorné Benedek Boglárka makes homemade jams in Szandaváralja. The route of the National Blue Tour goes right in front of the gate of his house, where he meets a lot of tourists all year round. Hence the idea that it would be worthwhile to expand jam-making activities more widely. The fruit is sourced from fruit trees in the garden and on the hillside, making quince jam flavored with plums, cherries and cinnamon, among other ingredients. Last year, it began to showcase its products more widely. His friends encouraged him to dare to dream big, and acquiring the GEOfood brand will certainly help promote his business.
Balázs Nagy from the Nagy Mihály Herbs Company
Balázs Nagy was able to receive the award on behalf of Nagy Mihály Gyógynövény Kft. The three-generation family business has been growing, processing and selling herbs since 1974. The plant is located in Cserhátsurány, where the collected medicinal plants are stored in a 3,000-square-meter warehouse. 70% of the raw materials are sourced from wild herbs and the rest from fresh purchases. There are about 50-60 types of plants in their product range. Since 2000, they have been marketing their products with Bio certification.
Snacks from local ingedients
Mezzz.hu - straight from the hive is also a family business with more than 30 years of experience in the field of beekeeping. Its main profile is the production of quality products made from natural ingredients, such as medicinal beekeeping products, honey specialties and honey natural cosmetics. The company works with nearly 100-150 bee colonies, based in Márkháza. It aims to convey the naturalness and purity of honey through their custom-made products.
A new GEOfood product: Quince marmalade from Szandaváralja