Source: eKapija | Tuesday, 28.01.2020.| 10:32
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2019 RETROSPECTIVE – Investments in AGRICULTURE AND FOOD INDUSTRY most interesting to eKapija users

Illustration (Photo: Allexxandar/
The year behind us was marked by big acquisitions and investments in perfecting technology and knowledge in the field of agriculture and food industry. There's more and more talk about the need for digitization and innovations in this field, and producers have recognized this as well.

In addition to following the trends, “big players” are also trying to get a secure position in the market, which has led to transfers that have drawn the widest attention, from the economy to end-users. The investments announced for this year, as well as the commencement of various facilities, announce an interesting period ahead of us.

We highlight the ten articles which attracted the most attention.

Barry Callebaut chocolate factory and research center

The Barry Callebaut chocolate factory and research center from Novi Sad are first on our list. The opening of the factory was announced on April 18, when the company signed the Memorandum of Understanding with the Government of the Republic of Serbia and the City of Novi Sad.

It was announced at the time that this state-of-the-art facility would be located in Novi Sad and that the plan was for it to have a production capacity of over 50,000 tons a year. The total investment over a five-year period should reach the amount of EUR 50 million.

The factory is expected to start working in 2021.

These factories are also present in China, Russia, throughout the USA, Spain, Mexico, Brazil and Turkey, among other places, and the facility in Novi Sad is the their first in southeast Europe.

Knjaz Milos – acquisition and new investments

Karlovarske Mineralni Vody (KMV), the largest distributor of non-alcoholic drinks in Central Europe, and PepsiCo, a global producer of food and drinks, agreed a joint investment in June, more precisely, the purchase of 100% of the Serbian company Knjaz Milos.

This news placed second, as Knjaz Milos, with the seat in Arandjelovac, has more than 200 years of history behind it and is one of the largest producers of mineral water, non-alcoholic and energy drinks in Serbia.

The company Mattoni 1873, through its daughter-company KMV, and PepsiCo Inc, through its company Frito-Lay trading Company (Europe), finalized the acquisition of 100% of Knjaz Milos in August 2019 through a joint investment.

BioSense Digital Farm in Sumadija

The third spot belongs to BioSense. The knowledge of BioSense's team in the fields of agronomy and meteorology, as well as in machine learning, enabled them to win third prize at the prestigious “Crop Challenge” contest for the implementation of artificial intelligence in agriculture.

They used the parameters they knew had an impact on the yield – the number of consecutive tropical days in July, the number of days without precipitation, the total amount of precipitation in various phases of the development of maize and others. They then linked these parameters with the yield, thanks to machine learning, and easily detected the hybrids resistant to drought and high temperatures.

Also, the Digital Farm moved from Vojvodina to Sumadija, where the focus is on fruit growing.

Nectar organic apple plantation Vladicin Han

Nectar's organic apple plantations in Vladicin Han placed fourth. In July, this company opened the largest organic apple plantation in Serbia on a total of 114 hectares.

– We expect the yield in the first year to amount to 500 tons of the best organic apple varieties. A total of EUR 200,000 was invested in the equipment and the seed material, and EUR 500,000 will be invested over the next four years – the company said.
(Photo: Nectar)

The opening was attended by the president of the Chamber of Commerce of Serbia, Marko Cadez, and the state secretary at the Ministry for Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management, Velimir Stanojevic.

Tron craft brewery Obrenovac

The Tron brewery in Obrenovac, which started working four years ago, placed fifth. The brewery's production capacity is 15 tons of beer a month, but they also started building a new brewery, where the monthly production capacity will be four times as high.

As Nemanja Stefanovic, the director of the brewery, told eKapija, EUR 100,000 is the minimum amount that enthusiasts and beer aficionados should set aside if they want to start producing their favorite drink.

The Tron beer, which can currently be found at pubs, beer pubs and hotels throughout Serbia, from Subotica to Nis, should start being exported to the EU and Russia by mid-2020.

Mobile solar power plants for irrigation

Solar irrigation of agricultural and fruit cultures is growing increasingly popular in Serbia, as Lazar Zelenovic, the director of Turn Key Project do.o.o. (TKP), told eKapija. The company offers mobile solar power plants – systems which use solar panels to turn solar energy into AC electricity and are an efficient replacement for smaller diesel generators.

This article placed sixth, and the interest in solar pumps has considerably increased in the past three to four years.

The readers have also learned that the prices go from EUR 3,000 up, depending on the model, and each pump system is designed individually.

Yuhor – new fermented sausage capacities

The meat company Yuhor expanded its production facility in Jagodina by 3,000 m2 in December, thereby doubling the capacities for the production of fermented sausages, and the investment is worth EUR 6 million.

The equipment of German and English producers, such as K+G Wetter, Vemag Anlagenbau, Multivac and Loma Systems, is installed in the new facility. New chambers for the smoking and the maturing of products, as well as vacuum and slice packaging lines, are installed as well.

Yuhor dates back to 1902. Since 2004, it has been part of Delta Holding. Yuhor has also developed a network of 52 outlets throughout Serbia.

Al Dahra investing in PKB

The eighth spot belongs to the news that Al Dahra would invest EUR 15 million in PKB by March or the end of April 2019, which is more than a half of the agreed investment over a period of three years.

In October 2018, Al Dahra signed an agreement on the purchase of PKB for slightly over EUR 105 million.

It was agreed for more than 17,500 hectares of agricultural land to be worked on at eight farms, strategically located in close proximity to Belgrade center. The company plans to grow sugar beet, sunflower, wheat, corn, barley, livestock feed and several kinds of vegetables, among other things.

Acquisition of Bambi – Coca-Cola

The ninth spot belongs to the announcement made in February that Coca-Cola HBC AG had started the process of acquisition of the leading domestic confectionery company Bambi from Mid Europa Partners, worth EUR 260 million.

As announced at the time, the strategic intention is for the acquisition to open new development possibilities for the company in Serbia and the region, as well as the possibility of expansion to complementary product categories.

Coca-Cola HBC AG is the leading filling plant of Coca-Cola with a sales volume of over 2 billion units, whereas Bambi is the leading local producer of confectionery from Pozarevac.

Investments in Budimka

The tenth spot belongs to the investments in Budimka. The company was sold in November at a public auction for RSD 212,700,000 to ITN Group from Kosjeric, a company for innovations in agriculture and frozen vegetables. This was the third sale of Budimka.

The new owners, Vera and Dragan Markovic, met on this occasion with the president of the municipality of Pozega, Djordje Nikitovic. In December, it was was said that the new owners would invest EUR 5 million and that the first steps would be made in March or April 2020.

Take a look at the full list of investments in the AGRICULTURE AND FOOD INDUSTRY category and compare it to your opinions, expectations and estimates.

Companies: Beograd
Barry Callebaut South East Europe doo Novi Beograd
Knjaz Miloš a.d. Aranđelovac
Karlovarské minerální vody, a.s.
A&P Dobanovci - PepsiCo
PepsiCo International Purchase
Privredna komora Srbije
Grad Novi Sad
Ministarstvo poljoprivrede, šumarstva i vodoprivrede Republike Srbije
Vlada Republike Srbije Beograd
Coca-Cola Hellenic bottling company-Srbija d.o.o. Beograd
ITN Group Beograd
Budimka a.d. Požega
Al Dahra Srbija doo
KONCERN Bambi Požarevac
PKB Korporacija a.d. Beograd
Delta Holding d.o.o. Beograd
Turn Key Project d.o.o. Beograd
BioSense Novi Sad
Nectar Bačka Palanka
Mid Europa Partners LLP London
Mattoni 1873
Frito Lay Trading Company Europe
KG Wetter
Vemag Anlagenbau
Loma Systems
Marko Čadež
Velimir Stanojević
Nemanja Stefanović
Lazar Zelenović
Vera Marković
Dragan Marković
Đorđe Nikitović
chocolate factory
Memorandum of Understanding
production of mineral water
mineral water
energy drinks
digital farm
machine learning
artificial intelligence
Crop Challenge
hybrids resistant to drought
hybrids resistant to high temperatures
organic apple plantation
organic apples
fruit plantation
craft brewery
production of beer
Tron beer
mobile solar plants for irrigation
solar power plants
solar pumps
fermented sausages
production of sausages
smoking chambers
maturing chambers
vacuum packaging line
slice packaging line
purchase of PKB
sugar beet
animal feed
frozen vegetables
sale of Budimka
sale of Bambi
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