Far from the light news and paparazzi approaches, the story of Prince Charles’ affairs in Romania are purely defined by figures and data. It’s a still unwritten story about the European accession and the fears it causes in two small villages.
The “crown jewels” are two small villages near the city of Sighisoara, Viscri and Malancrav, where the “Mihai Eminescu” Foundation, that has Charles as spiritual patron invests in ecological farming and restorations.
In Malancrav, 108 hectares in long term lease produce ecologically pure apple juice. This year, a few freezing days in spring cut down the harvest to a lot less than last years’ 17,000 liters. Starting in 2008, the affair might gain a 30,000 euros aid from the European Union but, for the moment, there’s no profit at all.
A bottle of natural apple juice costs 4.5 RON (1.3 euros), but the price might rise to 6 RON, due to the lack of profit. The 20,000 euros income this year is spent entirely to maintain the farm.
In other villages, the main interest of the Foundation is to upkeep and repair the ruins of 3-4 centuries old buildings and chateaus. Due to their presence, the tourist flow increased to 40 foreign tourists every day, a true blessing for the 12 peasant resorts authorized to offer accommodation. Average price ranges between 10 and 20 euros per day.
The Foundation’s total investments in restoration reached 260.000 dollars and continue with some major projects.