Rose harvesting in Bulgaria attracts many visitors


Bulgaria’s rose harvesting season has begun in rose plantations near the southern town of Kazanlak where a rose harvesting ritual during the weekend attracted many visitors, Bulgarian News Agency BTA reported on Monday.
Kazanlak is the best known rose growing region in Bulgaria. One of the top three rose oil producers in the world, Bulgaria exported 1,370 kg of rose oil in 2023 and fetched an average export price of €9,168/kg. Most of the export goes to the US, China, Japan, Taiwan, South Korea and France.
A harvesting ritual near the village of Cherganovo last Sunday was made a part of the programme of the 121st edition of the Rose Festival, according to the local administration. Many visitors came despite the rain. They saw a demonstration of rose distilling and were offered to try rose jam and rose beverage.
Rose harvesting rituals will be held all weekends until 2nd June. Roses are harvested early in the morning, before the sunrise, the organisers told BTA. Work ends by 09.00 because the concentration of essential oil in the rose petals is found highest between 04.00 am and 08.00. Traditionally, women sing while picking the rose petals and compete each other to harvest the most. The one who harvests the most petals, later get the honour of leading a dance in the village square.
Rose distilling started as soon as the harvesting for the day was over. The boilers were loaded with rose petals and water. Roses to be harvested should be in full bloom for maximum oil content. The first distillate is known as rose water. It is put to a second distillation to turn into rose oil.
According to the Bulgarian Agriculture Ministry, there are 2,943 registered rose growers in Bulgaria. The registered processors are 67, and they use 53 facilities for processing roses.

Leave a Reply

Send this to a friend