Serbia: Policy Dialogue in the Dairy SectorSerbia: Policy Dialogue in the Dairy Sector

Dairy is among Serbia’s most important agricultural subsector as it makes a significant contribution to national GDP with an estimated value of primary production of EUR 500 million annually, further increased by processing. Considering the higher food safety standards applied in the EU, structural changes in the sector will be ongoing and it is of the most importance to support effective policy dialogue. In 2013, the dairy sector suffered from an aflatoxin crisis which heightened the need to focus on food safety communication. To facilitate export development and the eligibility for dairy products, the project undertook the following steps: • analysis of the 2012/2013 aflatoxin crisis • risk communication: protocol and guidelines developed and signed by the Ministry and Milk Producers Association • dairy sector study: provided a basis for better policy formulation with dialogue on market trends, data and milk policy initiated • establishment of the Serbian Dairy Congress: fostered capacity development and knowledge exchange • analysis of state support: governmental capacity for WTO accession negotiations increased after technical support Although the situation has improved in Serbia in the past few years, it is estimated that still approximately 30% of farmers in Vojvodina are unable to guarantee milk production with aflatoxin levels under 0.05 micrograms per kilogram for lack of adequate storage facilities for corn and silage. Further work will be done to i) ensure open, constructive and regular dialogue ii) interventions in the most needed areas iii) capacity building for the sector. Project Leader: Dmitry Prikhodko;
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