High demand for Ukrainian organic berries
As berries continue to gain in popularity amongst consumers around the world. Over the past decade, sales of berries have doubled, with forecasts for the next five years even more optimistic. Ukrainian suppliers are creating cooperatives in response, in order to become more and more competitive in the international market, especially in the EU. According to Ivan Kotyash from Ukrainian Fresh & Frozen Products (UFP), organic berries are even more interesting to producers, with demand at least two times as much as conventional.
UFP is a global trading company that supplies frozen products grown in Ukraine. The company has its own fields, where the organic berries are grown, its processing plant in Malyn (Zhytomyr region – 100 km to the West from Kyiv) and its own logistics company. This allows the large harmonious UFP organism to work for the best results and represent the Ukrainian berries to Europeans.
"This season we grew 75 hectares of our own berries, next year the territory will increase by another 120 hectares. We came to this region to develop berry cultivation, when the berry industry in the Zhytomyr region was very low. There was not a single processing facility, despite being near a forest full of wild (organic) plants with blueberries, blackberries, elderberries, and cranberries, products which are high in demand with European consumers," shared Ivan.
Along with the wild berries, the company also works with organic certified producers of raspberries, strawberries, sweet/tart cherries and plums (to name a few), brought to UFP for freezing.
"We currently cooperate with leading European consumers, but we don't want to stop there, and are always looking for promising new markets. I think that the most interesting are Asia, the Americas and Israel. We have the Organic Standard certificate, which confirms our ability to work with organic products without crossing the flow lines of cultivated berries,"
"Someone has land and somebody else has the money. We know how to combine this for growing quality berries, and we know where to sell it," said Ivan Kotyash.
For more information:
Ukrainian Fresh & Frozen Products
Publication date: 11/29/2017
Author: Heather Wicks
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