Bulgaria Newsflash Week 23

What’s new at the BATA AGRO exhibition; why the Bulgarian vineyards are getting smaller; what are the new trends in the Bulgarian export of agricultural goods; with what kind of a project Bulgarian students won WWF competition? See the answers in our latest Newsflash week.

Bata - Agro 2021 Bulgharia

13th edition of BATA AGRO exhibition

A total of 183 companies participated in the 13th edition of the BATA AGRO agricultural exhibition in the southern town of Stara Zagora June 1-5. The exhibits were displayed on a total area of close to 40,000 sq m. The event took place for the tenth year in a row after being postponed several times due to COVID-19. The programme included traditional demonstrations of self-driving agricultural machines and attachments, test drive opportunities and demonstrations by some of the largest companies for seeds and planting stock, fertilizers and preparations. In remarks at the forum, caretaker Agriculture Minister Hristo Bozoukov said that it is important to transition gradually to newer, more reliable and higher-quality machines, if Bulgaria is to have a modern, safer and more efficient agriculture. Between 2015 and 2020, Bulgarian farmers registered 6,505 new wheel tractors and 942 new combine harvesters. Sub-measure 4.1 , of the Rural Development Programme 2014-2020 for investment in farms can help modernize Bulgarian agriculture. The measure is very popular among farmers because it provides funding for up to 50% of costs.


2020: Vineyards getting smaller, grapes output shrinking

In 2020, vineyards in farms totaled 47,001 ha and 28,774 of those were cultivated. The grapes output was 11% smaller than the year before, AgriBG reports quoting an Agriculture Ministry analysis. The 2019 grapes harvest totalled 178,534 t and a year later it was down to 159,097 t. The vineyards with cultivated red wine varieties were 61% of all cultivates vine variety plantations and the rest were white varieties. Some 3% of the vineyards were young and unproductive. Due to adverse climate conditions, 2,395 of the vineyards were not harvested and no care was taken care of at 14,000 ha of vineyards due to social and economic reasons. The register of the Vine and Wine Executive Agency has 15,922 ha with varieties that are suitable for wines with protected appellation of origin, 20,767 ha with varieties for wines of protected geographical indications and 23,473 ha for other varieties.

Grain seeds

2020: Bulgarian export of agricultural goods down by nearly EUR 18 mln, export up by EUR 294 mln

In 2020, the Bulgarian export of agricultural goods totalled EUR 4,775,294,000 and was down by nearly EUR 18 mln from 2019 or 0.4% from 2019, says AgroPlovdiv quoting the National Statistical Institute. During the same time, imports increased by 7.9% or EUR 294 mln, to reach EUR 3,997,112,000 against EUR 3,702,996,000 in 2019. Grain crops continue to dominate the export. Due to destructive drought, grain export came down by 8% to a total of EUR 1.16 billion against 1.35 billion in 2019. In 2020, the agricultural sector generated 15% of the annual community exchange (17.1% of the total export and 13% of the total import).


School students win WWF competition with their own organic pesticide

Students of the Rousse High School of Mathematics, on the Danube, won a competition of the international organization WWF with a project for manufacture of organic products. Inspired by the cause for sustainable agriculture, the students developed organic products totally based on herbs. They created a herb-based pesticide while they were working on a sustainable agriculture case in their entrepreneurship club, reports Bulgaria ON AIR. The pesticide’s ingredients include nettle, garlic, mint, essential oils and herbs, explains Martina Pencheva. “It was inspired by traditional methods for dealing with crop pests and aims to reduce the harm that chemical pesticides cause to the soil and underground water,” she adds.