Over 80 exhibitors from the fruit, vegetable, meat and dairy industries showcased their premium food products at the first annual Belgrade Food Show. Organized by the Unites States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Association for the Promotion of Serbian, the food show helped exhibitors forge new sales contracts, develop business partnerships, and identify investment opportunities.
“Since my arrival in Serbia, I have been struck by the hugely important role food plays in Serbian society,” said U.S. Ambassador Kyle Scott. “Serbians take pride in their food and are creative when it comes to experimenting and innovating with the high-quality natural products Serbia produces. It is about time more people around the world recognize this and know about the great food products that Serbia is making.”
“This event is essential to raising visibility about the vast potential of our food industry.” said Minister of Agriculture, Forestry, and Water Management Branislav Nedimović. “In addition to exporting raw food materials, it is far more important for Serbia to use these resources to develop high-quality products and export them as Serbian brands. This way, everyone in the value chain will have far greater benefits. For this reason, the Ministry of Agriculture will focus on supporting initiatives that make Serbian food processing more competitive.”
USAID supported the Belgrade Food Show through its $12 million Competitive Economy Project (CEP). CEP supports efforts that strengthen Serbia’s food processing sector—particularly fruits and vegetables. The assistance is designed to be replicable and to increase the entire sector’s competiveness and export potential. CEP partnered with the Association for Promotion of Serbian Food to create a sustainable platform for showcasing Serbia’s products and positioning it as a regional leader in specialty foods. In addition to increasing sales and fostering partnerships, the Belgrade Food Show provides seminars, access to sector experts, and information that will help firms within the sector improve their businesses and reach new markets.