Hunger Games: How to Produce and Sell a Croatian Product?

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Croatia has all the resources for food production, but we lack a serious business model that would enable us to feed ourselves and export the food, stated Denis Matijević, Director of Smarter consulting company at the ‘Hunger Games’ panel.

All trends are in favor of domestic production, but the figures show quite the opposite. Croatia’s agricultural production has halved from the previous 30 to 15 billion kunas. As heard during the panel, the import of food products has exceeded a value of three billion euros.

Tomislav Popović,  Maistra CEO, says that the share of Croatian products in his company is far more than 50 percent, which is an estimate for the entire sector. “The problem is not the production or quality of Croatian products, but the logistics and distribution. In order to be effective, we want our product to come to our doorstep and that have access to it throughout the year, and a large number of manufacturers are not able to do this,” Popović said.

Davor Bruketa claims that good marketing can do a lot, you just have to have a good story and do something that no one else is doing. “There are large, middle and small successful Croatian companies that have done so much. You can’t operate the same as others, you have to do something interesting. A while ago, you had to have a lot of money for a big campaign, and now all you have to do is to film a movie and send it out into the world. You need to do something that others don’t do,” stated Bruketa.

Zvonko Popović, Director of Kanaan from Donji Miholjac, a company from which every other chips and flips come from, described his business model and the positioning on the Croatian and foreign markets. About 50 percent of production is exported. ‘I have to fight with the world’s biggest producers on the market. That’s why we entered the hand-fried chips and special snacks segment which they never really expected. It is possible, you just need to find a way. One way is to enter in the foreign retail companies and then use them to enter foreign markets”, says Zvonko Popović.