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28th World’s Leading Trade Fair for Organic Food BioFach (www.biofach.de/en) took place on February 15−18, 2017 in Nuremberg (Germany). Ukrainian National Pavilion was be presented there for the Fourth time and brought together 12 co-exhibiting companies and 5 on-distance participants. 2nd Forum: Ukraine as a reliable supplier of organic products was organised in the frame of BioFach and gathered about 100 participants from 10 countries. Ukrainian exhibitors held more than 800 business meetings with potential buyers over 4 days of the Fair.

2, 785 exhibiting companies from 88 countries exhibitors from all over the World participated at BioFach 2017 and approx. 50.000 people from 134 countries visited it this year. Official brochure of the Ukrainian National Pavilion 2017

Ukrainian National Pavilion unites people who are interested in the development of the organic sector in Ukraine and promoting Ukrainian products to international markets.

The representative delegation of Ukraine has just returned from the biggest organic trade fair BioFach 2017 (Nuremberg, Germany).

«Ukrainian National Pavilion, which was organized at BioFach for the fourth time, was very successful this year», says Ksenia Gladchenko, Director of QueS consultancy body. «We are honoured to admit that Ukraine is attracting more and more attention of the international organic community not only thanks to the variety of Ukrainian organic products but also thanks to the consolidation and cooperation among the organic stakeholders and state authorities. For the second consecutive year the Forum organized within the Ukrainian National Pavilion has shown some positive trends and quality changes in the Ukrainian organic sector in terms of traceability, openness and reliability.

17 exhibitors represented Ukraine at BioFach 2017. Some of them are already well known to international partners thanks to participation in various exhibitions and their responsible business operations. At the same time new companies are confidently joining the international organic market: these are SMEs that do not have big facilities but are able to bring unique products from the fertile Ukrainian land to the international organic market. According to Sergiy Galashevskyy, Director of Organic Standard certification body, Ukrainian organic export is growing at a very fast pace and only the organic operators certified by Organic Standard exported over 164,000 tons organic products in 2016.

«Today the organic sector in Ukraine is quite young. However, we can observe a significant growth of this sector in recent years», says Olga Trofimtseva. «According to IFOAM statistics, in 2015 Ukraine had 210 certified organic farms and the total area of organic land was 410.55 thousand ha (about 1% of all agricultural land). In addition, 560 thousand ha of area for wild collection are certified. Over 80% of organic products are exported. The main importers of Ukrainian organic products are the EU countries, but the geography is gradually expanding. I am convinced that each conscious organic producer in Ukraine deserves respect because they set a high benchmark for conducting business and organizing all production processes. The main task of the Ministry, as I see it, is creating a valid and transparent legislative framework for the work of all organic operators, developing the mechanisms which would help honest producers to become competitive and the state to have effective regulation and control tools. In general, I think that Ukraine has all pre-conditions to become the „organic hub“ of Europe and the world in the nearest future».

Since 2014 the Ukrainian National Pavilion has been supported by the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO, Switzerland) within the framework of the Swiss-Ukrainian Project «Organic Market Development in Ukraine» (www.ukraine.fibl.org) implemented by the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL, www.ukraine.fibl.org).

Deputy Director of the Swiss Cooperation Office in Ukraine Viktor Shutkevych is convinced «Ukraine deserves to take an important place at the world organic map. Switzerland has been helping Ukraine to achieve this goal since 2002, in particular, through the running project «Organic Market Development in Ukraine» in which the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food of Ukraine is the beneficiary. Thanks to the support from Switzerland and fruitful work with the Ukrainian organic stakeholders, the Ukrainian National Pavilion has been successfully working at the biggest organic trade BioFach for four years where international buyers meet organic producers from Ukraine. It is important for this effective export tool to continue working in future (after the support of Switzerland is ceased) for the Ukrainian organic producers in particular and for the positive image of Ukraine as a reliable organic supplier and agrarian country in general.

In 2017 the pavilion has also been co-funded by the German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) through the two German-Ukrainian cooperation projects «Advice to Ukraine on agricultural trade issues under the deep and comprehensive Free-Trade Agreement (DCFTA) between the EU and Ukraine» and «German-Ukrainian co-operation in the field of organic agriculture», both implemented by AFC/IAK (www.afci.de / www.iakleipzig.de).

Western NIS Enterprise Fund (WNISEF) funded by the U.S. government via the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) (www.wnisef.org) has also supported the pavilion.

Nevertheless, the majority of expenses for organizing the Ukrainian National Pavilion have been covered by the exhibitors themselves; the financial support of donors is being reduced, which is indicative of the sustainable development of the organic market.

The Ukrainian National Pavilion is organized by the Consortium of three Ukrainian key organic stakeholders: QueS Organic Consultancy Body, Organic Standard Certification Body and Information Center «Green Dossier». This year the Ukrainian National Pavilion at BioFach 2017 has been organised under the support of the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.