A new agricultural center with Israeli technology will be set up near the city of Vladivostok, Primorye Territory Governor Vladimir Miklushevsky said on November 13. An agreement to set up the center was signed by the Primorye Administration and Biotecmarket, a Russian-Israeli company, during the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok in September 2015. The Primorye center will be the first of 15 agricultural product wholesale and distribution centers in Russia using Israeli technology.
According to Miklushevsky, around 60 percent of the space at the center will be occupied by specially equipped storages facilities for vegetables, fruit, potatoes, meat, fish and other products. Produce will be procured from local farmers, he added.
“We really liked the Israeli technology and were able to include the Primorye Territory on the list of places, where such centers would be set up,” Miklushevsky said. He added that using this technology would also help increase the territory's production of grain, vegetable, meat, dairy and other food products, and improve storage conditions.
Governor Vladimir Miklushevsky taking a tour around one of the farms in Primorye. Source: Press photo
About 400 people will be employed in logistics and service jobs by the center. A single payment network will be established for all transactions, keeping out “shady deals,” which, according to the Agriculture Ministry still make up at least 20 percent of transactions in the Russian market. “Currently we don't have a top-level wholesale system: producers are forced to collaborate with intermediaries, the products go through middlemen before coming to the final user,” project director and Primorye Deputy Governor Sergei Sidorenko said. The new scheme would bypass redundant links in the chain, he added.
The agreement with Biotecmarket will also give the Primorye Territory an opportunity to build a center for transplanting cattle embryos. “It is expensive to import highly productive breeding cows from afar and this technology will help us get 10-20 calves from one elite cow and thus greatly reduce the costs of breeding the herds,” Miklushevsky said.
A single network
An interregional network of such centers is being created in Russia on the initiative of the Agriculture Ministry and their use will reduce the costs of food products by 15 to 25 percent. These centers will provide the necessary storage volumes and conditions, as well as guarantee quality control. The Agriculture Ministry expects the network to increase the income of agro-businesses by 30 to 50 percent, thanks to the guaranteed long-term storage of the products.
The Primorye Administration is aiming to increase the region's gross production of agricultural and food products by one and half times by 2018. For this, the authorities are offering local producers substantial benefits. If companies invest more than 50 million rubles ($763,000), their income and property taxes will be waived for a stipulated period.