More than 90% of vegetables and fruits in Bulgaria are imported as a result of reduced domestic production

 About 90% of the vegetables and fruits sold on the Bulgarian market were imported as a result of the reduction of domestic production volumes told to Radio Bulgaria the executive director of the Bulgarian Association of Fruits and Vegetables, Chavdar Marinov. According to national statistics, from January to October 2018, Bulgaria's vegetable imports grew up to 11.7% from year to year to 226,700 tons and the imports of fruit increased by 9.4%, about 255,300 tons.

Meanwhile, Bulgaria's agricultural volumes declined by 2%, although last year to Bulgarian farmers were awarded subsidies worth of 1.3 billion euros .

Over 50% of subsidies were provided by EU funds, while the rest from the state budget, Bulgarian Agriculture and Food Minister Rumen Porozhanov announced.

Apparently the Bulgarian agricultural sector is not going through a very good situation and this is felt by every Bulgarian consumer who buys food products. Limited quantities of domestic products such as eggs, fruits, vegetables, meat and dairy products are sold in Bulgarian stores, while the rest of the products is compensated mainly from Turkey, Greece, Poland, Serbia, Greece and North Macedonia.

Bulgarian agriculture accounts for about 5% of the country's gross domestic product. Thirty years ago, Bulgaria exported food products to all countries of the socialist bloc. After the transition from communism to democracy, Bulgarian agriculture undertook various reforms, but unfortunately none of these reforms provided the expected positive results.

The Bulgarians got their lands, which during the Communist regime were owned by the state.

However, young farmers became owners of small land areas, usually less than 1 hectare, and were unable to support their families, rather than compete with their products on Bulgarian and foreign markets.

As a result, many young Bulgarians abandoned the villages and emigrated to big cities, not only in Bulgaria but also outside, in search of a better life.

The villages in Bulgaria are now with an old age population.

Only wheat producers manage somehow to make the necessary modernization and consolidate into larger, more modern and efficient companies that export cereals to Europe and other continents with great success.

Bulgaria is also one of the largest producers of essential oils in the world. This country is the largest producer of aromatic herbs and spices in the European Union. According to Eurostat data, a total of 81,000 tons of aromatic and medicinal plants and spices grew in Bulgaria in 2017.

Bulgaria has strong traditions in agriculture and several decades ago it is considered a highly developed agrarian country. Now the situation has changed. Neither the extremely favorable natural conditions nor the financial subsidies granted under the EU's common agricultural policy have contributed to the development of the agricultural sector in Bulgaria. Bulgarian farmers' income fell due to the reduction in volumes and sales of production.

According to the National Statistics Institute, their incomes fell by 14.8% in 2018, while income in other sectors of the national economy grew by over 7%. Therefore, Bulgarian agriculture is a sector of low productivity.

There is no sign of a positive development in this sector, and even organic agriculture, which is considered promising and attractive, accounts for only 5% of all production volumes in this sector. Meanwhile, the consumption of fruit, vegetables, meat and imported dairy products has increased.
More than 90% of vegetables and fruits in Bulgaria are imported as a result of reduced domestic production More than 90% of vegetables and fruits in Bulgaria are imported as a result of reduced domestic production Friday, March 08, 2019 Rating: 5
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