Origin of hazelnut culture (Corylus Pontika) on the Black Sea coast and particularly in Georgia (Colchis) is considered to be IV-III centuries B.C. Because of reach natural conditions there are almost 30 hazelnut varieties in Georgia. From industrial point of view hazelnut culture is widely distributed in subtropical zone of West Georgia – on plains of Samegrelo and Abkhazia, also in Guria and Imereti regions.
On the basis of laboratory testing, the varieties of hazelnut produced in Georgia have the highest richness index among those produced in the world. Generally, richness index for Georgian hazelnuts is 62%-72%, which is approximately 7-8% more than of Turkish, Spanish, Greek and Italian varieties.
Basic varieties of hazelnuts In Georgia
Origin: a Georgian cultivar of local origin, mostly distributed in the commercial orchards of Abkhazia and Samegrelo region of Western Georgia.
Origin: a Georgian cultivar of local origin, produced as a result of natural hybridization; appropriated for both East and West-Georgian hazelnut growing-regions.
Origin: Origin: a Georgian cultivar of local origin, mostly distributed in Guria region (Western Georgia).
Origin: a Georgian cultivar, mostly distributed in Imereti region (Western Georgia).
During last 50 years hazelnut industry in Georgia has increased from 7 to 40 thousand tons per year, large majority of which is exported to EU countries.