Poland takes sixth place in the EU in the rank of producers of organic food. Polish consumer spendings for eco-products are, however, well below average. This is why local producers set their minds to export.
A Pole spends an average of 3 euros per year on organic food. A German – 96 euros and a ‘statistical European’ – 47 euros. This information was published in 2016 by IFOAM EU, gathering over 160 industry organizations related to producing eco-food (it brings together the associations of farmers and reproducers, traders and scientists, as well as the institutions that certify and protect customer rights).
The enormous disproportion in spendings on organic food, that meets the standards of certification in accordance with the provisions of the EU (not to be confused with so-called healthy food, which is a marketing term) explain, why Polish producers look hopefully towards the West. – Germans are an attractive country for Polish producers due to the short distance dividing the two countries and the familiarity with the procedures, which are unified for the countries of the European Union. Let’s not shy away from the fact that what is also important is the high purchasing power of German customers and high demand for the premium products on this market – said Lukasz Gasiorowski, the representative of Ogrody Sabinu. The brand signatures fruit juices that are produced in a small town in the Drawsko County, which are available on the international markets with the ‘bio’ certificate.
Korea values Polish aronia berries
The Polish Investment and Trade Agency Management indicated in the document “The food sector in Poland”, that it is crucial for obtaining new markets to “strengthen the brand of food from Poland, that is a synonym of high-quality products” and “shape the image of Poland as a provider of products (…) made from top quality components meeting the rigorous sanitary requirements”.
Lukasz Gasiorowski was able to create a distribution channel for the preserves to as far as South Korea. – We have been selling our products there for a few years. Polish aronia berries are especially renowned in the Korean market. This is our hit export product. Korean clients expect a product of set high quality and our company is able to deliver it to them – assured Gasiorowski, who at the same time stresses some important issues with the development of the export of Polish organic food. – In my opinion, this means expanded bureaucracy. Moreover, finding partners with insight to the local markets, who have both operational inventory and long-term perspectives of development on a particular market, is still a significant problem – emphasized Gasiorowski.
A lot of producers, a few processors
The Polish organic food market is characterized by enormous disproportions between producers and processors. For almost 25 thousand registered producers there are only 484 processors. For the sake of the comparison: in Germany 23 thousand producers cooperate with over 9 thousand processors. The share of the Polish processors in the market is below 2 percent and in Germany this figure exceeds 40 percent. IFOAM EU estimates the German retail sales market of food to be worth almost 8 billion euros per year and the Polish – 120 million euros. For the Polish producers this is yet another argument to export organic food to Germany.
Cost optimization of export can take place, for example, with currency exchange. – For a company that exports goods to various continents, apart from (quite obviously) currency exchange rates, the most important thing is the fast completion of the operation. There is a lot of entrepreneurs among our customers who use transactions from the currency wallet, which allows the instant conversion of received funds in euro to the Polish zloty – noted Piotr Kicinski, Cinkciarz.pl Vice-Chairman of the Board. As stated in the report by the experts from the Polish Investment and Trade Agency Management quoted above, these types of optimizing mechanisms will become more important for the development of business. However, the increase in population of the countries of the Far East and Africa might result in the shift of the direction of the export of Polish food. According to Polish entrepreneurs, this will make the dynamic adjustment of their offer and the business tools they use with the new rules on the market even more vital.