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BELGRADE, June 17, 2020 – Belgrade-based Desing, with the support of the USAID Competitive Economy Project, has organized a kickoff event to launch the Center for Development of Innovative Products Made with Oblachinska Cherries. The Center’s main activities are focused on the development and promotion of high-quality and healthy products made with this fruit, and the promotion of Serbian brand “Oblachinska Cherry” on the local and international markets, which will add value to the products, and consequently lead to increased sales and exports.
“Although there has been no concerted effort on creating the "OBLACHINSKA" brand, it is recognized globally, but only among industrial processors. The goal is to properly present the Oblachinska cherry to end consumers, so that people buying a product made with this variety of sour cherry will know that they are get something special and exceptional,” said Miodrag Tomić, director and owner of Desing.
“The Oblachinska cherry accounts for about 85% of the total sour cherry production in Serbia. The high content of dry matter, favorable ratio of sugars and acids, relatively easy pitting, good fruit firmness and extremely high-quality, aromatic taste make it a variety of exceptional quality. Polyphenolic compounds are the most important biologically active compounds of the Oblachinska cherry. They are characterized by exceptional antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antitumor activity, as attested to by a large number of scientific publications," explained Dr. Mile Veljović, President of the Food Technology Council of Serbia.
"Placing the focus on Serbian autochthonous fruit varieties is a great opportunity for domestic agriculture and the food industry. In addition to clear economic benefits through higher level processing and marketing of Oblachinska cherry products, this activity will also help Serbia to better position itself as a brand in the global market. Authenticity, tradition and quality are values that are appreciated among both local and foreign consumers," said Aleksandar Pavlović, Director of the USAID Competitive Economy Project.
In the coming period, the Center for Development of Innovative Products Made with Oblachinska Cherries will focus on attracting producers from the agri-food sector in order to jointly promote the products and enter new markets. This will be followed by free-of-charge trainings on food technology and safety, innovation, marketing and promotion, access to markets, and sales strategies. More information about the trainings and future activities can be found here: http://www.desingtastecenter.org/