The ultimate goal is Japan.
Smoked prosciutto, ham and Slavonian salami Dobro produced by the Žito Group from Osijek, owned by Marko Pipunić, are now available in international markets as well. The products can be purchased in the Austrian retail chain Penny Markt Österreich, as well as in the Czech Republic, reports tportal.hr on November 24, 2017.
The products of the Žito Group are available in 290 stores of one of the largest retail chains in Austria. “The agreed quantities are a business secret, and we can not disclose them,” said Andrea Biglbauer Mijić, head of Žito’s marketing department. “We are only at the beginning of cooperation, and we can not expect large quantities at first. But, it is a market that has great potential for distributing our products,” said Žito’s representatives, asked how much sales they expected from this deal.
Žito is currently negotiating with companies from Macedonia, Slovenia, Italy, Poland, Germany, Switzerland and Scandinavia about possible placement of their products in those countries. The plan is to increase a share on the European market and later to further increase the production.
Pipunić has invested about 500 million kunas in his meat processing facilities. Part of the investment was supposed to be funded from the Rural Development Programme, which was partly contested by the auditors of the European Commission due to certain irregularities, so this project lost support as well. Nevertheless, the works did not stop in Čepin near Osijek, and 150,000 prosciuttos are produced there each year. The project represented Croatia at this year’s global entrepreneur competition in Monte Carlo.
Interestingly, Žito decided to use prosciutto as its primary product, and not the Slavonian kulen, as was perhaps expected. “We have chosen prosciutto to represent our brand because there is much greater potential for this product, not only in Slavonia and Croatia. I need a market of billion people who want to eat prosciutto,” said Pipunić.
“The ultimate goal is Japan, but Europe is the market we are counting on. Even Croatia can consume 150,000 prosciuttos per year, that is not a particularly large amount. In Slavonia, we have the potential for 10 or even 15 times larger capacities than we have now, which is at least two million prosciuttos per year. We just need to find interested people who want to work and convince the banks to support us,” concluded Pipunić.
Translated from tportal.hr.