About the project


„Naša istarska koza – La nostra capra istriana“


26. ožujka 2024. godine


AZRRI - Agency for Rural Development of Istria d.o.o.


Region of Istria
Association of Istrian goat breeders / Asociazione allevatori della capra istriana


The Istrian goat is an indigenous breed that inhabits a narrow breeding area of the Istrian peninsula and is unique in Croatia. For the people of Istria, the Istrian goat is a highly significant breed and an integral part of their identity and tradition. Evidence of this is its appearance on the coat of arms of the Istrian County, where it has long existed as a heraldic symbol of Istria and its people. Today, there are around 140 Istrian goats in Istria, highlighting the need for their protection and revitalization due to their exceptional importance as valuable genetic and cultural heritage.

The Agency for Rural Development of Istria was established with the aim of protecting Istrian indigenous breeds through development programs, valorization, and promotion of local Istrian products, as well as preserving life in the rural areas of Istria. In collaboration with the Region of Istria and the Agency for Rural Development of Istria, efforts have been combined to revitalize and increase the number of Istrian goats.

As a breed, the Istrian goat is of large stature, with strong bones and fundamentally white hair, possibly with grayish or cream shades. A characteristic feature of the breed is the presence of beards in both males and females, as well as the occurrence of horns. The bucks have long, heavy, and rough horns, directed backward, with a span between the tips often reaching up to one meter. Goats weigh between 55 to 80 kg, while bucks weigh between 70 to 120 kg, depending on external factors.

To preserve the Istrian goat, all available tools will be used with the unique goal of preventing the breed from being lost. First and foremost, breed consolidation is necessary due to the small number of individuals. This measure will be coordinated by the Agency for Rural Development of Istria in collaboration with HAPIH - the Croatian Agency for Agriculture and Food, as well as the Faculty of Agriculture at the University of Zagreb. One crucial measure is the support from the Region of Istria through the agricultural department, providing direct funding for each Istrian goat registered in the register. Additionally, Region of Istria, through its Agricultural Fund, provides financial resources to Istrian goat breeders in the form of extended repayment period loans with subsidized interest rates.

One of the tools that the Agency for Rural Development of Istria will particularly encourage is the creation of economic programs for products derived from the Istrian goat. Primarily, these are milk and dairy products, and after the breed consolidation, when some availability of male bucks that are not suitable for breeding is ensured, a valorization program for Istrian goat meat and meat products will be created.

A valuable tool in conserving and consolidating such a small number of Istrian goats is the Istrian Animal Gene Bank at the Agency for Rural Development of Istria. This bank primarily serves for storing and preserving valuable genetic material in the form of hair, tissue, haploid cells (sperm and egg cells), and when possible, embryos of the Istrian goat. The gene bank, or rather the genotyped data obtained from tissue samples of each individual goat, is unique information used in creating a breeding program for the Istrian goat, specifically a mating program for parents to prevent inbreeding.

In the Istrian goat conservation project, the Agency for Rural Development of Istria has devised a unique program to provide additional financial assistance to breeders to ensure funds for a quality, long-lasting, and sustainable Istrian goat breeding model. With the aim of preserving the Istrian goat as part of the cultural, traditional, and genetic heritage, the Agency for Rural Development of Istria will establish a FUND called "Naša istarska koza - La nostra capra istriana". The fund aims to unite lovers of Istria and admirers of the Istrian goat, as potential "adopters" or "adoptees" of Istrian goats, who will help preserve and ensure the survival of the breed through their donations.


Agency for Rural Development of Istria, through its special account, aims to contribute to the preservation of the Istrian goat as an indigenous breed by supporting Istrian breeders. Individuals can become honorary "adopters" of their Istrian goat or "supporters" of the program through donations. This initiative ensures the economic viability of Istrian goat breeding given the small number of individuals and the lack of an economic program. It also promotes the retention of people in rural areas and increases the number of breeders while preserving the Istrian goat as an indigenous breed of the Istrian peninsula, ultimately contributing to the preservation of Istria's rural landscape.

  • Revitalization and protection of the Istrian goat through symbolic "adoptions" of Istrian goats and supporters or partners in the foundation "Naša istarska koza - La nostra capra istriana";
  • Encouraging Istrian breeders to breed Istrian goats;
  • Increasing the number of Istrian goat herds;
  • Implementation of a breeding program for the protection of the Istrian goat.

Individuals and businessmen who, with their contribution, want to help local Istrian goat breeders and contribute to its preservation.

  • Encouraging breeders in the Istrian County to join the foundation "Naša istarska koza - La nostra capra istriana" and increasing the number of Istrian goat breeders;
  • Increasing the number of Istrian goat herds in the Istrian County;
  • Promoting the use of the Istrian goat to preserve biodiversity and genetic uniqueness;
  • Promoting economic conservation programs for the Istrian goat;
  • Raising awareness about the protection of the Istrian goat through "adoption" or support programs;
  • Contributing to the valorization of the Istrian goat as a significant symbol of Istria.

The Agency for Rural Development of Istria, with the aim of revitalizing the Istrian goat as an important genetic and cultural heritage, wants to connect individuals who, with their contribution, want to help in the efforts to preserve this original breed, but also to support local breeders. Through its activities, the Agency wants to tell all potential "adoptors" or donors, that by their act of symbolic "adoption" they significantly contribute to the work of Istrian goat breeders and contribute to the possible expansion of the number of breeders and the increase in the number of Istrian goats.

The task of AZRRI, the Agency for Rural Development of Istria, is to manage the paid donations and to distribute them according to the breeders who will purposefully utilize those funds. It is important to emphasize that the entire procedure will be transparent, so that the donor or "adoptor" of his goats can at any time find out all the details about its breeding through the obligatory annual photos or videos. This way of supporting the work of the Association and helping Istrian goat breeders aims to raise awareness of the importance of the Istrian goat for Istria, but also for its preservation for the future.

Individuals symbolically adopt the selected Istrian goat, thereby inspiring others and helping to revitalize the Istrian goat. The donation will be used to support the Istrian Goat Association, which directly supports and coordinates the work of Istrian goat breeders. The breeders included in the program will be presented through a website, where every interested individual will be able to find all the essential information about the individual breeder and his herd of goats. Also, on the website, through the Regulations, but also in the Donation Agreement, the breeder's obligations will be highlighted, which are very important and must be adhered to by all breeders, among which are:

  • Allocate the funds received from this Project in accordance with this Regulation.
  • Adhere to laws and regulations regarding the health and welfare of animals, in full.
  • Participate in the process of collecting samples for genotyping and entering data into the gene bank of AZRRI (Istrian Animal Gene Bank).
  • Follow the instructions of the Association of Istrian Goat Breeders and the Fund in implementing the breeding program and mating plan.
  • Ensure the correct, complete, and timely registration of animals, especially offspring, in the unique register of domestic animals.
  • Facilitate unrestricted access for representatives of the Fund to Istrian goat herds and breeding locations for monitoring the use of funds and other obligations under the Agreement.
  • Enable representatives of the Fund and experts to record Istrian goat herds using photo and video means for project promotion.
  • Facilitate visits by "adopters" of individual Istrian goat herds as announced in accordance with this Regulation.
  • Clearly display the logo of the Fund for the Conservation of the Istrian Goat, which will be assigned by the Fund after the approval of funds, in a visible location.

Adoption of Istrian goats is symbolic and based on received donations. There will be an opportunity for donation through a one-time payment via credit card and bank transfer to a special account of AZRRI. The adoption will last for one year, after which the individual, or "adopter," will receive an invitation to renew the adoption for another year. The confirmation of adoption is provided in the form of a "Certificate," which each "adopter" will receive, valid for one year. "Adopters" will be informed about the work and activities of AZRRI and breeders, as well as the growth and development of their goats through annual reports. The rights and obligations of "adopters" and breeders, represented by the "Naša istarska koza – La nostra capra istriana" Fund, will be regulated by a Donation Agreement, which both parties must adhere to. Individuals or entities can support the foundation through symbolic adoption and become supporters of the Istrian goat revitalization and protection program through their donations, directly aiding the foundation's work.


An individual/company can become an adopter or supporter.

An adopter is a person who donates a certain amount to AZRRI and symbolically "adopts" their Istrian goat. The adopter is also a donor who, based on a one-time donation, becomes a symbolic "adopter" of their goat. The donor has the obligation to renew their "membership" after one year by confirming the "adoption package" they wish to use and receives their adoption certificate again. In return, the donor, or "adopter," should receive all necessary information about their "adopted" goat and receive annual updates and photos.

Adopter 500,00 EUR annually

By making a one-time payment and based on the agreed Donation Agreement, the "adopter" symbolically adopts their Istrian goat. The "adopter" can choose the name of their goat and receives their adoption certificate accordingly. At any time, the "adopter" can visit their goat or obtain all information about its status. To retain their goat after one year, the "adopter" needs to renew their subscription. The "adopter" is presented with a "Certificate of Adoption" of the Istrian goat as a token of appreciation for supporting Istrian goat breeding. All data about the adopted goat and the adopter will be visible on the "Naša istarska koza – La nostra capra istriana" web platform. The platform will provide all information about available goats for adoption or donation.

"Adopters" will be able to visit their animals at any time, with prior notice required.

A supporter is a person who supports the project of supporting Istrian goat breeding and who supports breeders with their donations or financial resources but does not "adopt" their Istrian goat.

Both groups of individuals/companies contributing to the conservation of Istrian goats will be informed about their adopted goats and the work of AZRRI, an association tasked with coordinating the foundation and supporting Istrian breeders.


AZRRI-Agency for Rural Development of Istria d.o.o.
Association of Istrian goat breeders / Asociazione allevatori della capra istriana


10 years