Russia Open for More SA Food Products

The Russian market is open for more South African food products but South African companies require to strengthen their marketing efforts in order to penetrate the market successfully and increase their presence. This is the view of the Head of Food and Agriculture at the Russia-South Africa Business Council, Mr Mikhail Fateev.

He was speaking on the sidelines of the annual World Food Moscow which started in the Russian capital today and will run until Friday, 27 September 2019. More than 30 South African companies supported by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) through
the export marketing and investment assistance (EMIA) scheme are showcasing their products in the popular food and drinks international exhibition. The objectives of EMIA programme are to develop export markets for locally manufactured products and services, as well as to recruit new foreign direct investment into South Africa.

Fateev says the business council was established more than ten years ago with the aim of working with the governments of the two countries to increase trade and investment between South Africa and Russia. Its main purpose is to bring to the attention of the two governments hurdles and blockages that could hinder the efforts of the private sector from the two countries to do business in either country and to serve as a platform to facilitate interaction between business communities of South Africa and Russia.

“The Russian market is open for more South African food products. There is a big demand for the South African products here, but like anywhere in the world, the South African companies need to up their ante with regards to their marketing efforts. It will never be sufficient for them to come only for the World Food Moscow and expect to successfully penetrate the market or return home with loads of deals. They need to work on the market over time. They need to establish relations with the right people here and their rate of success will be increased,” said Fateev.

He adds that about 35% of the fruits imported into Russia are from South Africa and there is a huge opportunity to increase the volume.

“Just a few days ago there was 100% shortage of grapes in Russia and the containers that brought the grapes here today were from South Africa. This shows that opportunities the supply the Russian market with the South African food products are unlimited but it is for the South African companies to grab them and exploit them to their advantage,” added Fateev.

According to the South African Foreign Economic Representative in Russia, Mr Moloko Leshaba, World Food Moscow has proven to be a vital platform to expand the portfolio of South African exports of agro-processing sector.

“This trade fair continues to be an important gateway for introducing new products into the Russian market from South Africa. The continued presence of South Africa at the exhibition reinforce South Africa’s image as a reliable supplier of choice for the Russian importers,” said Leshaba.

The Head of Good and Agriculture at the Russia-South Africa Business Council, Mr Mikhail Fateev and the Marketing and Promotions Coordinator of the Fresh Produce Exporters’ Forum, Ms Marletta Kellerman at the World Food Moscow exhibition in Russia.

Sidwell Medupe-Departmental Spokesperson
Tel: (012) 394 1650
Mobile: 079 492 1774
Issued by: The Department of Trade and Industry
Follow us on Twitter: @the_dti

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