Slovakia: agricultural newsletter with food retailers are growing
News about the agrifood sector in Slovakia. With this time: Slovakia sees result of supporting expansion Slovak foodproducts - some countries ban import Slovak poultry after outbreak HPAI - bakery products make up the majority of food waste in Slovakia - food retailers are growing
Support for expansion of Slovak foodproducts
During a press conference on Wednesday February 5, Bratislava, the Government Council for Export and Investment Support highlighted activities to support the expansion of Slovak foodstuffs, launched by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
“When I took over the management of the agro department in 2016, the support for the expansion of Slovak food abroad was significantly undersized. Today I can say that we have had a piece of quality, conscientious work that has visible results. We tripled support for food presentations at prestigious foreign and domestic exhibitions, built national stands for them, which were absent at major events for a long time, and we organized special business missions and presentation days for them. In particular, our producers have not only established business contacts, but also concluded business contracts, ”said Gabriela Matečná (SNS), Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development after today's meeting of the Government Council for Export and Investment Support.
Promoting quality Slovak food abroad is also helped by a unique project - Slovak Food Export, which was launched at the end of last year. “Ambassadors and economic diplomats who have our territory in their portfolio did not have basic information about Slovak food producers and their products with export potential. These were the reasons that prompted us to create an export database of food companies - Slovak Food Export, ”explained Milan Lapšanský, General Director of the Food and Trade Department of the Ministry of Agriculture of the Slovak Republic.
The electronic database of Slovak producers and food products serves as an aid in finding new sales outlets and expanding markets for Slovak food producers. Its aim is to promote quality Slovak food products abroad and at the same time to support and develop our food industry.
The export database is used by ambassadors and economic diplomats during negotiations and in search of new sales opportunities for Slovak companies. It is also intended for all foreign buyers, distributors, importers, representatives of retail and wholesale networks.
Any Slovak food production company that exports abroad or has it in its long-term strategy can apply for free. Registration for applicants to the database is completely free of charge. The database is available at www.bestslovakfood.com.
Source: Slovak ministry of Agriculture
Some Countries Ban Imports of Poultry from Slovakia due to Bird Flu
The Slovak veterinary authorities received notifications from Ukraine, Israel and the United Arab Emirates that they've banned imports of poultry and some poultry products in response to avian flu recently identified in Slovakia. Ukraine has banned imports of eggs for hatching, poultry and poultry products (with the exception of products processed in a way that destroys the disease) from areas in Slovakia affected by bird flu. Israel has prohibited imports of live poultry, eggs for consumption and hatching, poultry meat, feathers and birds held in captivity from Slovakia. The United Arab Emirates has introduced a similar ban. Vets last week confirmed the fourth case of bird flu in Slovakia. One of these cases concerns Bojnice (Trencin region) zoo, which was subsequently closed for the public.
Bakery products make up the majority of food waste in Slovakia
Bakery products often go to waste in schools and households in Slovakia. Cheap prices could have something to do with this.
A survey conducted by the National Agricultural and Food Centre (NPPC) has revealed 39 percent of the waste produced in schools and households is bakery products. “This figure is enormously high,” Slovak Association of Bakers, Pastry Cooks and Pasta-makers (SZPCC) head Tatiana Lopúchová said, as quoted by the SITA newswire.
Fruit and vegetables (32 percent), dairy products and milk (16 percent), meat products (7 percent) and confections (6 percent) followed in the survey.
Lopúchová went on to say that improper storage and excess stocks are the most common reasons for producing this waste. Moreover, people are used to the low prices of bakery products, she said, and do not pay much attention to consumption.
Bakers believe if prices went up, people would not waste bakery products as much. They have been trying to raise prices with little success. Food retailers are aware of the situation but reduce their prices instead, the association claimed.
“Bakers consider it to be an explicit marketing move, which goes at the expense of their work,” Lopúchová said, as quoted by SITA. She pointed to a study within the European Union’s Food Use for Social Innovation by Optimising Waste Prevention Strategies programme, which analysed household waste. It says households in more developed countries waste fruit and vegetables much more than bakery products, which were among the last items to be wasted.
“This may be due to the higher price of bread and pastries on the shelves and the preservation of bakery traditions in the countries concerned,” Lopúchová added.
The NPPC survey was conducted on a sample of 200 Slovak households and schools in 2019 at the Agrokomplex event in Nitra.
Food retailers are growing
The retail sector is the second biggest employer in Slovakia creating jobs all over the country. People are shopping more frequently and retail chains try to get closer to them. In the number of outlets the retail chain Lidl is still more approaching to the leader of the Slovak retail sector - Tesco and Billa that have 50 units both here. In late January Lidl opened its 140th store in Slovakia and the fourth in Zilina. Billa plans to open five new stores and aims to create some 75 jobs. The British retail chain opens a new shopping center in the Bratislava borough of Petrzalka this spring.