Ms. Khatia Tsilosani, Deputy Minister of Environmental Protection and Agriculture, H.E. Carl Hartzell, Ambassador of the European Union to Georgia and Ms. Katja Kammerer, Programme Director for GIZ Private Sector Development and TVET South Caucasus, along with over 80 guests took part in the presentation of the National Guidelines for the Production of Quality Honey at Expo Georgia on 14th of November.
"The EU is committed to help Georgian producers bring their many unique and high quality products to the EU market – to the profit of both sellers and consumers. One of the main challenges to making this happen is ensuring that the right standards are met. That is why it is my pleasure to personally congratulate the first exporters of Georgian honey to the EU market here today, who - with the support of the EU and GIZ - are meeting and even exceeding EU standards. I hope that the National Guidelines presented today will inspire others to follow their great example and to produce safe and healthy products for Georgian and EU customers alike.” – noted Ambassador Hartzell.
“After signing of the Association Agreement with the EU, Georgia-EU trade and economic relations have moved to a new qualitative level. New opportunities have emerged for Georgian export products to enter and get established on the European market. The Ministry is actively implementing various activities to promote agricultural products that also includes raising competitiveness within the honey production sector. We are glad that in a close cooperation with the EU-GIZ project a guideline document has been developed, which will, hopefully, assist beekeepers and honey producers in production of high-quality products.” - said Khatia Tsilosani.
The guideline publication has been developed by leading German and Georgian experts in the framework of the EU funded project: SME Development and DCFTA in Georgia, implemented by GIZ on behalf of the German Federal Ministry of Cooperation and Development (BMZ).
“By presenting this publication today, GIZ marks conclusion of a 3-year intense and meticulous work that involved all stakeholders, EU Delegation, our partner Ministry, international and Georgian experts and local honey producers. This work brought us to the first export of Georgian premium honey to the EU. We have proven that Georgian honey can be competitive on the European market and sells at very attractive prices. I believe that this success story and the guideline publication we presented today will encourage and help other Georgian producers to follow the suit and we will see more of this special quality Georgian honey in Europe.” – noted Katja Kammerer.
It has been almost 3 years now that Georgian SMEs have an opportunity to export honey to the 500 mln European market. However, the biggest challenge remains compliance with the quality standards of the EU and lack of qualified specialists in the honey production sector. Hence, it is important that SMEs are kept well informed about the issues pertaining to export of honey to Europe.
The EU-GIZ project: SME Development and DCFTA in Georgia has been working on promotion of quality honey production for 3 years. It is within this project that a brand of TAPLI has been introduced, under which premium Georgian honey is set for export to the European market. Local producers who have already worked closely with the project and brought their honey up to the European standards are already united under this brand. Earlier this year, first export batch of the premium Georgian honey under TAPLI brand was already introduced at International Green Week in Berlin, which included honey from Geo Naturali Ltd (Racha Natural Products Cooperative) and individual entrepreneur Tamaz Glonti.
Sophio Makatsaria, 591-650-500
Thea Kentchadze (GIZ), 577-292-646, firstname.lastname@example.org