A kilo of blueberries this year and up to six euros?

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Blueberry producers could also find themselves in a potential problem, because although this fruit is in great demand, it is now debatable how it will reach customers.

“Everything is still uncertain and we have no concrete information, there are some indications that they will use some other routes when exporting. Nobody is saying anything about the price yet, but considering the situation we assume it will be higher than in previous years when it averaged about 4 “7 euros, this year it would be realistic to be around six euros per kilogram”, says fruit grower Mladen Šljivić for RINA, who grows blueberries on five hectares in the village of Mršinci near Čačak.

Serbian blueberry has experienced a real expansion in previous years, and the area under plantations of this fruit has increased throughout our country. Along with raspberries, it could become a new Serbian brand on the European and world market, and fruit growers hope that this situation will not make them take a few steps back when it comes to marketing their goods. An additional problem that arises due to the war in Ukraine, is how to get to the pickers, because on many plantations, broilers were picked by workers from other countries.

I specifically negotiated with the workers from Ukraine who were supposed to arrive at the plantation before the harvest, but now the big question is whether they will agree to it because of the whole situation, and finding good workers is getting harder every year, it affects the potential growth of the price of this fruit per kilogram “, says Šljivić.

From his blueberry plantation, he mostly goes to Germany, then to Georgia, Russia and Italy. It is extremely sought after on the foreign market due to its exceptional quality and taste, but also due to the excellent geographical conditions for production.

Blueberry pickers can earn about 300 dinars per hour, in most cases they work ten hours a day, and if the blueberries are in full bloom, they can harvest about 60 kilograms a day, and the harvest lasts about 20 days a year. It is also assumed that their per diem will be higher this year.

In order to be successful in the production of this fruit, large investments are necessary, which pay off after a few years. Most investments go to planting blueberries because seedlings are extremely expensive, but it is necessary to invest in an irrigation system and anti-hail net.