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Current Position:Home » News » General News » Topic

Slovenia: Focusing on North-African and Middle Eastern markets

Zoom in font  Zoom out font Published: 2016-04-15  Views: 4
Core Tip: The weather in Slovenia has been excellent with regards to the blooming period of the apple trees. Both January and February have been quite warm, though it is especially the favorable weather of March that has been a boon to the apple orchards.
The weather in Slovenia has been excellent with regards to the blooming period of the apple trees. Both January and February have been quite warm, though it is especially the favorable weather of March that has been a boon to the apple orchards. Although the apple harvest is set to start earlier than usual, it won’t start as early as was previously predicted at the start of this year.

Bostjian Kozole of the Slovenian apple company Evrosad says that even if this season starts this early, it shouldn’t pose any challenges for his harvest schedule. He is optimistic about this year’s production. “It’s still too early to see how large our volumes are going to be, but I think the regions of Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia should do quite well.”

According to Bostjian, the market for apples in Europe has changed a lot in the last five years. “It has become almost impossible to sell apples in Europe, apart from in the UK and Scandinavia. A lot of countries in Central-Europe like Italy, France, Austria and Germany produce a lot of apples. We used to sell a lot on markets in the eastern parts of Europe, like the Czech Republic and Romania. But nowadays these countries too have managed to get hold of their own production of apples. Poland in particular has become a major competitor for Slovenia, as they manage to offer their apples really cheap. Therefore, we started developing markets in Northern Africa and the Middle-East.”

The main focus of Evrosad right now is the domestic market. Bostjian is concerned about the consumption of apples, as the amount of apples that are consumed every year drops by 100,000 tons in the EU. “We focus on quality to sell more. I also think we all should do more with regards to promotion. We should also provide more information for the consumers, about varieties, seasons and such. But the most important tool to increase consumption is quality. I think all growers should focus on this,” says Bostjian.

Evrosad is changing their varieties, due to the new focus on the North-African and Middle-Eastern markets. Traditional varieties like Jonagold are replaced with
varieties like Royal Gala. A particular variety that is set to do well is the Evelina. “The Evelina has a great taste, a nice red color and just the right size for the North-African market. I strongly believe that the Evelina has huge potential in these growing markets.”
 
 
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