Poland, brief agricultural news week 43, 2019
What happened in Poland last week? A brief overview of agricultural news.
Preference for domestic food
In a report by the Polish Opinion Monitor project, it was revealed that almost one-third of Poles have a preference for domestic food over food is are imported.
When asked about their main shopping criteria, 58% of Poles named price and 69% of Poles said that would pay more for Polish-made ecological food. About 38% said that their main criteria when shopping are expiry dates and ingredients; 30% mentioned that they look for food of Polish origin.
When asked about the shopping location, 51,8% said they mainly shopped at local food stores and 51,3% named discount markets. A smaller percentage, 40,5% said they shopped in supermarkets.
The report states that Polish food exports have risen with 8 percent in the first half of 2019 compared to the first half of the previous year. Polish food exports were 15,4 Billion euros between January and June 2019. Poland is the leading producer of champignon mushrooms, poultry and apples within the Europe.
The Polish Opinion Monitor is a joint project by PKO Bank Polski, the IBRiS pollster and the Sustainable Technology Forum. The polls were compiled from 2-6 October and surveyed 1100 adult Poles.
Fraud in food discovered by Polish authorities
Based on several warnings Polish Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (UOKiK) controlled lately 96 shops of 18 retail chains in Poland. In 31 shops several abnormalities were discovered. This gives 1/3 of all controlled products. For instance Polish garlic came from Egypt, celery from the Netherlands and onion from many countries. In many cases the client was unable to check the country of origin of vegetables currently displayed in the store. As information about the country of origin is important for many Polish consumers (see previous news), those kind of practices are misleading and therefore forbidden in Poland. UOKiK is further controlling stores in Poland. The maximum possible penalty for this kind of fraud is 20 times the average wage in Poland.
Poland’s low egg exports
Poland is the seventh largest egg producer in the European Union and is also a major exporter. About 35% of all eggs produced in Poland are exported. In 2017, Poland exported a record high number of eggs and unsurprisingly this was a lot lower in 2018. The main reason behind 2017’s record high demand was due to a deficit of eggs in the (western) EU as a consequence of the fipronil-affair. Poland’s egg exports in 2018 reached a total of 199.400 tonnes and were 23% lower than those of 2017. Polish eggs are mainly exported to EU countries, of which 99% goes to the Netherlands, Germany and Italy.
Restructuring Tesco chain in Poland
The British Tesco chain has been in trouble on the Polish market for years. This year, however, can be considered a breakthrough - there have been serious reorganization activities, which are followed not only, as before, by the closing of unprofitable branches, group dismissals of employees and a change in the work system in stores, all dictated by the search for savings. Tesco has already sold part of the property in previous years. Now the time has come for other players to take over. At the end of September, the Bloomberg agency announced that the British chain's headquarters were seriously considering leaving Poland. The matter is to be discussed at the highest level, and economic calculation will be the deciding factor. Tesco is supposed to focus on other, more promising markets and on the home yard. Some facts: last year, Tesco reported an operating loss of £ 11 million in Poland with sales of £ 1.9 billion. In the first half of 2019/2020, the Group generated PLN 4.09 billion of sales revenue. Sales in pounds amounted to 841 million. Restructuring of operations in Poland was the main reason for the 7% reduction sales in the Central and Eastern Europe region. Tesco estimated that the costs of restructuring and dismissals in the first half of the year amounted to 75 million pounds, including 39 million pounds for the simplification of the model of the network in Great Britain. The changes in Poland have resulted in another 36 million pounds of restructuring costs. At the end of August this year Tesco had 345 stores in Poland. By the end of February next year, the network will be reduced in Poland by approximately 115 thousand square meters, and ultimately plans for about 362.3 thousand square meters of commercial space. Tesco seems to be satisfied with the actions in the Polish branch of their business so maybe the network will remain in Poland.