Tough season expected for Bulgarian growers
"I expect a tough season for Bulgarian fruit and vegetable producers due to market pressure from other countries," stated Mariana Miltenova, secretary of the National Growers Association of Bulgaria (NSGB) in an interview with "Focus News".
Miltenova recalled that the Russian embargo on European fruit and vegetables has already been in force since 2014, and that this year there is another ban on the import of fruits and vegetables from Turkey.
"We believe that all those fruits and vegetables that were intended for Russia will seek new markets.
"Inevitably, that means they will probably try to ship them to Bulgaria, and consequently, I don't expect Bulgaria's imports to fall, so Bulgarian producers will likely face difficulties because of the market pressure from other countries, which are not going to reduce their production," she said.
Miltenova noted that Turkey has huge greenhouses and now Poland and other countries are seeking markets for their produce.
"Immediately after 2014, following the entry into force of the embargo, the market was flooded with Polish tomatoes.
"Strangely, Poland, a much more northern country compared to us, is able to produce much more, but this has been the result of our politics, which for the last 15-20 years have been causing the destruction of the sector.
"So there is nothing to be surprised," pointed out Miltenova. According to her, many Bulgarian producers who used to be major fruit and vegetable growers in the past have given up as a result of these policies. ■