VITEBSK, 7 March (BelTA) - In 2013 the Vitebskhlebprom bakery company increased export to Russia by 26%, BelTA learnt from the company’s director general Mikhail Rog.
Over the past five years, Vitebskhlebprom has been actively pursuing the modernization effort. Last year it invested Br40 billion in the production upgrade. Roughly the same amounts were invested in modernization in 2012 and 2011. Sources of financing were bank loans, foreign credit lines and proprietary funds.
“We constantly refresh the product line-up. Our Polotsk subsidiary started making crisp bread. In Vitebsk we launched a production line to manufacture tostini-type bread which we supply to all regions of Belarus. Our major export item to Russia is malt rye bread because we have preserved the traditions of baking without using chemical additives and preservatives. We work only with organic raw materials and get a competitive product that stays fresh within 5 to 6 days,” Mikhail Rog said. Last year the export to Russia increased by 26% to a tune of $ 2.2 million.
According to Mikhail Rog, competition on the confectionary market has grown dramatically in recent years. New trading network open new shops in Vitebsk and have their own baking shops. “You can only stay on the market if you make high-quality and unique products. We started manufacturing the Kievsky cake, which has been popular since the times of the USSR, using the original technology which our Ukrainian colleagues shared with us. Our experts spent a few days in a shop of one of Kyiv's companies which has preserved the Kievsky cake recipes. Now we make this cake as well, he noted. The Kyiv company agreed to share their secrets in exchange for an opportunity to learn from the experience of the Vitebsk bakers of making malt rye bread which Belarus is famous for.
Vitebskhlebprom is actively working to reduce production costs, with energy resources making up the lion's share of them. "All lines and equipment that we have purchased recently are energy-effective. Compared with the old equipment, we save around 30-40%. In addition we hold regular tenders and contests for the acquisition of raw materials to choose the best price/ quality ratio,” said Mikhail Rog. Last year the company manufactured Br550 billion worth of goods, the return on sales was 7%.
Vitebskhlebprom includes 10 bakeries in district centers of Vitebsk Oblast:
Braslav, Verkhnedvinsk, Glubokoye, Dokshitsy, Lepel, Miory, Novolukoml, Novopolotsk, Orsha, Polotsk.