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Ignacio Frezik Croatian that flooded Colombia and half of the world with his strawberries
By Nenad N. Bach and Darko Žubrinić | Published  04/12/2014 | People , Education , Croatian Life Stories , Companies , Business | Unrated
The Frezik-Rozman Family is reputed to sell the most delicious strawberries in EL FRESAL (The Strawberry Place) in Colombia


Proud Mrs. Katarina Frezik, one of the daughters of Ignazio Frezik and Elizabeth Rozman (Elizabeta Rožman),
who emigrated from Croatia to Colombia after 1945.


 
IGNACIO FREZIK, A CROATIAN FELLOW THAT FLOODED COLOMBIA AND HALF THE WORLD WITH HIS STRAWBERRIES

This is the inspiring story of a family that came from Croatia to Colombia without money and without language. Years later they changed the economy of a region in the midst of The Colombian Andes.

By Armando Plata - platavoice@gmail.com

For half a century, The Frezik-Rozman Family is reputed to sell the most delicious strawberries in EL FRESAL (The Strawberry Place) located at Saucio neighborhood, Choconta Municipality of Colombia. Ignacio Frezik came to Colombia in 1954 as a refugee from World War II after escaping from four concentration camps.
 
With his wife Elizabeth Rozman and their children also from Croatia, he began less than zero: Bricklayer, domestic service, foreman, farmer, cook and micro-entrepreneur.

They were difficult times for Ignacio’s family due to the fact of the trauma of the war, the absence of the new language, and little money on their pocket. One of his daughters, Katarina Frezik, inherited from Ignacio the art of cooking, honesty and passion for work.
 
She cooks every day strawberry cakes, tarts, rolls, and Maria Luisa’s bread...

...muffins, cakes, pastries, juices, buttermilk, jams and more.

What is the key to success of EL FRESAL Products?

 "The flavor, size, color and juiciness of their strawberries ...





Ignazio Frezik with his wife Elisabeth Rozman and children arrived to Colombia in 1954
escaping from communism opression in ex Yu.

Colombian and Croatian flags decorating the Frezik products

 
Certain secret Ignacio Frezik’s formulas... and much love during cooking process”
By 1962, the Frezik-Rozman settled in The Sisga region close to the Town of Choconta.
Ignacio’s big and strong seedling development was the key to a good sweet strawberry.
His Strawberry product was immediately accepted in local supermarkets...
 
…Then Mr. Frezik changes one of his dairy cows for 8 acres of land and planted more strawberries...
 
...Later on, he agreed to pay 100 pesos per week for 100 acres of more land. His business grew to 40 employees.
 
For this reason Ignacio could pay his mortgage promptly. Three months after paying the last installment his landlord passes away.

Meanwhile, some of his workers took the planted seedlings  and soon The Region of Choconta was filled with strawberry crops to become Colombia's first producer and  strawberry exporter  to many countries worldwide.

Frezik’s strawberries are very appetizing and the ones they are selling in THE FRESAL shop are 100% organic.



Mrs. Elizabeta Frezik is known as a fantastic cook

The entrance to the Frezik paradise is decorated by the Croatian national flag

Fantastic Croatian national costume from the north of Croatia, kept in the family of Frezik in Colombia.

 
THE FRESAL Products often win prizes and force hundreds of travelers to sin for a moment in this place.
 
Katarina Fresik still works tirelessly  and enjoys experimenting with new flavors.
His whole family, Juliska, Yuryitza, Jorge Nunez and even their grandchildren Isabella and Santiago have mastered some of Ignacio’s "secret flavor".
 
"Choconta has been our refuge and has given us everything," Katarina said happily. What a great story of Ignacio Frezik and Elizabeth Rozman two survivors of war that loved Croatia, and their new home too. This family transformed  Choconta’s economy in the middle of the Colombian Andes.

Photographs were taken by the author, Armando Plata, with an Olympus SP-610uz on Sunday December 16, 2012.


Formated for CROWN by Darko Žubrinić
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