Home News Study visit to examples of good practice in Croatia and Herzegovina organized on 20 and 21 December 2011

Study visit to examples of good practice in Croatia and Herzegovina organized on 20 and 21 December 2011 PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 28 December 2011 16:05
The study visit was organized within the project “Capacity Building of Agriculture Businesses in Drought Adaptation”, funded by (USAID), in order to introduce the participants to the examples of good practice in the region. Total number of participants at the study visit was 100, including farmers and members of partner cooperatives' management and municipal officials from northeast Bosnia.
On the first day, December 20th 2011, the group travelled in two buses, with a stopover for lunch in Jablanica, and continued on to Dubrovnik, Croatia, where they stayed overnight.
On the day two, December 21th 2011, the group started off early in the morning and travelled to Opuzen, Croatia, to the facilities of Agrofructus d.o.o. company.


Agrofructus d.o.o. is the leading company in the area of South East Europe, specialized in production, purchase and sale of fruits and vegetables. Annually they supply  190 000 tons of products, grown in Croatia, Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia to 15 countries of western and eastern Europe, with an annual turnover of over € 100 million. Agrofructus own seven big repurchase centers, specialized by products. The repurchase center Opuzen runs throughout the year, it is equipped for reception and preparation of various kinds of fruits and vegetables, and is used for placement of 50 000 tons. It stretches over 11 000 square meters, 6 000 of which is refrigerated and is equipped with the state-of-the-art mandarin calibrator with a processing capacity of 35 tons per hour. The annual capacity of the center is 25 000 tons of mandarin (50% of the total domestic production), of which 18 000 tons gets exported. Agrofructus works with around 850 subcontractors on the production of mandarin. Agrofructus staff took the group on a tour of the facility, showed all the elements of it and explained the methodology for products’ traceability, standardization of the products, and particularly how they developed cooperation with their cooperants and how it works.

The visit then continued in Metković, Croatia, to a private greenhouse of Mr Bruno Volarević. Mr Volarević specialized in production of seedlings, primarily watermelons and melons, but also grows lettuce and lambs lettuce. What is very special about Mr Volarević’s greenhouse is an irrigation system that is using rain water. There is plenty of water available in the entire Neretva river valley, but its quality is poor for irrigation. Therefore, Mr Volarević installed a system for collection of the rain water at the entire surface of the greenhouse; the rainwater is then collected in a zinc-coated steel reservoir covered with geo-membrane (to prevent loss of water). The irrigation system is built around the reservoir, and is fully automatized. Mr Ivo Andrić of Granum d.o.o. Čapljina, who designed the rainwater irrigation system, gave the group a tour.

Finally, the group visited Hercegovinavino company vineyards and its irrigation system in Žitomislić (between Mostar and Čapljina) again guided by designer of the irrigation system, Mr Ivo Andrić. Hercegovinavino d.o.o. is private company founded in March of 1994. Its basic activity is production and trade of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. Hercegovinavino has a network of branch offices and distribution centers in all major cities in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Hercegovinavino Mostar is the majority shareholder and distributor of Winery Čitluk wines. Their products, especially wine, can be found on the market in European countries, and recently the U.S. market, Russia and China. Hercegovionavino has over 300 ha of vineyards across Herzegovina. The irrigation system in Žitomislići services around 70 ha of vineyards Žitomislići I and II, including autochthonous Žilavka and Blatina, but also some table cultivars. For the purpose of irrigation of these vineyards, a drop-by drop irrigation system, using water from a well drilled at 8 m of depth and equipped with two pumps of 32 kW was built.