Will eggs and chicken from Serbia find their way to the European market?

, News

At the end of September, the news arrived from Brussels that after thirty years, pork and chicken meat from Serbia could be on the European Union market again. While pork production has to wait for additional controls, the process of approving the export of poultry meat and eggs is underway.
Returning to the list of countries that can export chicken and eggs to the European Union is not an easy task. No wonder, because we have not been present in that market for three decades.
“We had an online audit in June, a very demanding audit when we had some small corrective measures that we removed in a short time and submitted to the European Commission. Now they are considering it and we have entered the procedure to read it and expect approval,” says Emina Milakara from the Veterinary Administration.
There are more than 1,600 poultry farms and 1,050 egg farms in Serbia. Last year, 115,000 tons of chicken meat and a billion and a half eggs were produced on them.
Almost everything was spent on the domestic market, because due to the ban on exports to the Union, only the CEFTA market is available to poultry farmers. Eggs rather than meat could travel Europe. Five, six farms are already ready to “come to the fore” to European producers.
“It is a good circumstance that a lot has been done in the past period on the regulation of control and prevention of salmonella, marking and declaring eggs, where it is all in line with European rules. It should be borne in mind that we are not lagging behind,” points out Rade Šćepanović from Rebrakomerc.
Through licenses for the European market, domestic chicken could reach other countries that have been closed to it so far.
“We had the opportunity to export to other countries, but we did not have a permit to cross the EU, which is our chance in the ministry’s efforts to reach some other markets through the EU that may be less picky or more accessible to us. Middle East, for example. For a while, we could not export to the requested Moldova, and we could not cross the EU territory,” said Rade Skoric of the Poultry Business Association.
In order to take advantage of the opportunity to export to the Union, many will have to improve their production, which requires significant investments. At the moment, only two slaughterhouses and two meat processing factories have European standards, according to the Veterinary Administration.
“We have over 90 registered slaughterhouses in Serbia, but these are relatively small facilities for the EU market. It takes a lot of investment to increase capacity and invest in capacity that means some more stages of meat processing. Chickens slaughtered in the carcass can be found wherever you want in much larger systems. These are big investments,” says Skoric.
According to experts, the advantage of Serbian chicken over European chicken is better quality meat, genetically unmodified, because our animals eat food that does not contain genetically modified corn or soy, RTS reports.