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€15 million investment in vegetable processing

The Belgian-owned company Sugo Food Kft. launched the construction of a new vegetable processing facility in Baja, Bács-Kiskun County in Southern Hungary, reports the news portal Magyar Mezőgazdaság. The development of the new processing facility at the company’s headquarters is the first phase of a €15.12 million development project, which will consist of three phases in total. The Hungarian government provided a development subsidy of €4.7 million for the project. The processing plant will produce and package tortilla chips, and in the next phases, the company intends to expand their frozen vegetable product portfolio and cold storage capacity. The Belgian Roger & Roger group, the owner of Sugo Food is reportedly planning to invest a total of €16.5 million in Hungary as a part of their 2020-2024 strategy.

Hungary's horticulture faced environmental issues last year but also, the sector has been stagnating for decades - the reason for which is inefficient coordination between growers and processors, which presents new business opportunities.

Hungary has very good conditions for fruit and vegetable production, however, due to structural weaknesses, the horticulture sector has been stagnating for decades. Some of the current issues include the growing need for irrigation development and weather damage management, however, a lack of business cooperation between growers and processing companies also leads to inefficiencies. Increased business cooperation could enhance productivity and efficiency.

The Hungarian horticultural sectors have an annual produce output worth €196-201 million, from which the processing industries annually produce products worth €434-450 million. Hungary’s annual horticultural export (canned vegetables, jams and marmalades, fruits syrups, etc.) is worth €380-400 million.

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