Bulgaria Newsflash Week 19, 2022
Bulgaria is seeking to improve interaction between supermarket chains and local food producers; Ukraine and Bulgaria agree on transportation of Ukrainian grain through Bulgarian port; Ministry and fish producers with good cooperation; Finally wholesale food prices getting stable; First International Lavender Festival in June!
Working group to seek ways for improving interaction between supermarket chains and local producers
Representatives of various sectors, the large supermarket chains, the Economy and Industry Ministry, the Commission for the Protection of Competition and other state institutions will participate in a working group that will seek ways to improve interaction between supermarket chains and producers. It will be headed by Deputy Agriculture Minister Momchil Nekov, said the Agriculture Ministry. The working group will be focused on reviewing the effective legislation and proposing revisions. Agriculture Minister Ivan Ivanov expects to see ideas for legislative changes shortly, within weeks, so as to protect the interests of both producers and supermarket chains.
Ukraine and Bulgaria agree on transportation of Ukrainian grain through Bulgarian port
Ukraine and Bulgaria agreed on transportation of Ukrainian grain through the Bulgarian port of Varna, Agri reported quoting Bulgarian Prime Minister Kiril Petkov as saying after meeting with President Volodymir Zelenskyy. Bulgaria is willing to turn the Port of Varna into a logistical hub for Ukrainian grain and sunflower. Shipping of Uktainian grain to Varna won’t be without problems, beginning from the fact that the rail link from Ukraine uses Russian-standard track gauge of some 1.5 m, which is 10 cm wider than the standard in most of Europe. It means that the freight will spent longer time at the border.
Agriculture Ministry has good cooperation with producers and processors in Fisheries sector
The government continues to have fruitful cooperation with producers and processors in the Fisheries sector, Deputy Agriculture Minister Stefan Bourdjev said as he visited the Kavarna mussels farm and processing plant, reported the Agriculture Ministry. Built and modernized on EU funding under the Fisheries and Aquacultures Programme 2014-2020, it is the largest mussels producer in the Balkans. The deputy minister also visited the nearby Port of Balchik. He is quoted as saying that the Ministry is exploring the options for improving the infrastructure and the working conditions for fishermen using the port.
Wholesale Food Prices Stable for Third Consecutive Week
The wholesale food market index remained mostly unchanged this week at 2.209 points, compared to 2.210 points a week earlier, the Bulgarian News Agency (BTA) reported quoting the State Commission for Commodity Exchanges and Wholesale Markets. The index has increased by nearly 21% since the start of 2022 but has been stable in the last three weeks. A year ago, it stood at around 1.610 - 1.615 points. The base level of the index was set in 2005 at 1.000 point. Greenhouse-grown tomatoes cheapened by 1.3% to 4.53 lv/kg and greenhouse-grown cucumbers, by 2.4% to 3.66 lv/kg. The average wholesale price of potatoes dropped by 4.1% to 0.93 lv/kg.
Walnut plantations remain a farming fad
Areas under orchard and nut trees, and berries total 65,500 ha and 45,100 ha have been harvested. They produced a total of 226,100 t of produce, according to Agriculture Ministry statistics reported by Agri. In 2021, cultivated areas were 1% more than a year earlier and the harvested area increased by 9%. Due to adverse weather or other reasons, some 11% of orchards were not harvested. The largest share of harvested plantations were cherries (24%) and plums (21%).
First International Lavender Festival to Be Held in Chirpan in June
The first International Lavender Festival will be held in Chirpan and in the village of Sredno Gradishte from June 17 to 19, the Bulgarian News Agency (BTA) reports quoting Chirpan Mayor Ivaylo Kracholov. Six countries have already confirmed their participation. The festival’s programme includes a bazaar of lavender products, international photography event, folk music performances, techno parties, a children's art workshop, and three large art installations. Among the highlights of the festival will be a performance of Sting's "Scent of a Woman" by the the Stara Zagora Opera. For several years now, Bulgaria has been a world leader in the production of lavender oil, leaving behind France’s Provence. Nearly all lavender oil produced in Bulgaria (99%) goes for export.