DURING the communist era Kovotvar Kúty used to supply the whole Slovak population with zinc galvanised buckets and watering cans. Nowadays these garden accessories of simple and practical designs can be found in e-shops in German and the UK, even in the Highgrove shop of Prince Charles in Buckingham Palace, the Hospodárske Noviny economic daily wrote in February.

“Products for [the Highgrove shops] must meet the most demanding quality requirements,” Marcela Tokošová, director of Kovotvar Kúty said, as cited by the daily.

It is the hand-made production that is the most appreciated on products from Kovotvar. While its competitors coat products with zinc on automatic lines, in Kúty this is done by hand. The process resembles middle-age manufacturing, but is of higher quality. The next nearest such galvanising plant is in Poland.

“The sheet does not bend; the product is watertight and can hold as long as 50 years,” said Tokošová.