On March 28, 2019 a group of the best 20 Ukrainian growers and processors of fruits, berries & vegetables will hold B2B meetings with key importers and supermarket chains from the Middle East region. The trade event is hosted by Dubai Chamber and branded as Fruit Trade Ukraine – Middle East.
All companies on this trade mission are GlobalGAP certified and produce altogether 51 thousand tonnes of premium quality fresh apples and more than 4 thousand tonnes of fresh berries, mostly blueberries and sweet cherries but also strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, red currants and haskup (honeysuckle). Some of these berries are organically certified by the EU authorities. There are also largest freezers on this trade mission producing more than 5 thousand tonnes of frozen berries of all types, including organically certified. Two of the companies are also involved in production and exports of walnuts.
Vegetable and potato growers included in this mission grow annually 80 thousand tonnes of produce, mostly carrots, potatoes, onions, asparagus and beetroots and are well-equipped to ship them to the Middle East. There are several fruit and vegetable processors on this mission, which offer healthy snacks, fruit chips, tomato paste, NFC juices, freeze dried and dried products, ketchups, jams, sauces, etc.
«Before any trade mission, we spend a lot of time training participants to determine USPs of their products and how to present them well. We also teach them to do business in the specific region by providing them comprehensive market data, price analyses, helping calculate logistics, learn packaging and certification requirements, demonstrate successes and failures when trading with the Middle East and we do involve businessmen from this region into the training process. Thus, they come well-prepared for successful B2B talks.”, says Andriy Yarmak, export development project leader and an economist of Investment Centre at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO), which is the key organizer of this event together with EBRD. The event is co-sponsored by FAO and EU through EU4Business initiative and supported by Ukrainian Horticultural Association.
According to EastFruit analysts, Ukraine is one of the global leaders in terms of blueberry area expansion estimated at up to 1,000 ha per year. Ukraine has also gone from exporting apples to one country only to widening export geography to 40 countries in just a couple of years after the Russian ban on supplies, confirming its strong focus on unique apple characteristics.
«Produce traders in many countries confirmed that there are not so many countries in Europe, which can offer equal quality of apples and berries as Ukraine thanks to up to 15hrs of daylight in the summer and most of the days being sunny due to very dry climate in Ukraine with only 400mm of precipitation usually observed in the winter and spring. This also helps us use a lot less chemicals than any other country in Europe, keeping our apples healthy and clean. Full colouring and deep taste of our fruits is due to sharp variation between day and night temperatures. On top on this we are very lucky to have plentiful supply of high quality water and the best black soils in the world making our products nutritious and healthy. And yes, we are very competitive in price and we do use the latest production, storage and handling technologies», says Fedir Rybalko, chairman of Ukrainian Horticultural Association.
Today more than 50 leading fresh produce importers from 10 Middle East countries as well as supermarket chains have registered to attend B2B meetings. The online registration continues on https://fruit.trade-ukraine.org/ web-site and organizers are trying to accommodate all interested buyers.
Trade forum Fruit Trade Ukraine – Middle East will be combined with Sweet Trade Ukraine – Middle East, with 20 confectionery and honey suppliers from Ukraine and Middle East buyers. Registration for this forum is also going well and is still possible at https://sweet.trade-ukraine.org/
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