The fifth International fruit, vegetable and viticulture fair Agro Belgrade 2024 held at the Belgrade Fair from January 25 to 27. This year too, Agro Belgrade confirms its status of the leading fair and conference event in the region and a hub for business opportunities, knowledge acquisition and networking of producers of fresh, frozen, and processed fruit, vegetables and grapes, buyers and representatives of retail chains, as well as manufacturers of agricultural machinery and equipment, nurseries, seed and chemical companies, as well as other companies and industry experts.

Agro Belgrade 2024 in numbers:

Number of days: 3
Number of exhibitors: 531
Number of participating countries: 15
Number of visitors: 30,000
Number of conference sessions: 8
Number of conference program participants: 700
Number of B2B meetings: 300

Agro Belgrade is organized with the support of the USAID funded Big Small Businesses project, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management of the Republic of Serbia, the Secretariat for Agriculture of the City of Belgrade, the Chamber of Commerce of Serbia, with the company Budimka as a friend of the fair.

The Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management of the Republic of Serbia, Jelena Tanasković, said at the opening of the fair: “Agriculture represents an important place in the Government’s program, and what is different now is that we have dedicated ourselves to each farmer. In the program we presented, we tell those thinking about whether to engage in production or what to do in the coming years, whether to increase or decrease production, that they should not have any dilemmas. We have a transparent approach to producers and predictability in terms of subsidies, which is the highest so far and which can be seen from the budget of 119 billion dinars and from all credit lines that are not in that amount and what we have prepared through the IPARD 3 program of a total of 600 million euros for the agricultural sector until 2027. There are other projects that we are just about to offer to our farmers in terms of equipment modernization, financing sources, and everything else necessary for agriculture to raise its competitiveness. We are committed to the European market, but we absolutely do not give up on opening new markets either.”

“This fair is young but has already achieved significant success in Serbia and the region. That’s why we support it because fairs serve to bring people together and acquire new knowledge. The city of Belgrade has a lot of room for progress in agriculture, both organic and conventional. This year, we allocated significant funds for subsidizing agriculture. We will invest over 500 million dinars in small farms and a significant part in fruit and vegetable growing. Also, in the last five years, together with the Faculty of Agriculture, we have been organizing free education for all farmers from the territory of Belgrade”, said the Secretary for Agriculture of the City of Belgrade, Savo Pavičić.

Christopher Hill, the US Ambassador to Serbia, said: “We are proud that the US Government, through the American Agency for International Development, has been able to contribute to Serbia’s further modernization of the agricultural sector. And we are especially proud that USAID was one of the organizations that helped found this fair five years ago. I hope that this gathering of representatives from different countries across the region would suggest agriculture really needs an open region with borders that do not divide but rather connect, and therefore, we support all regional integration projects, especially Open Balkans. So, I think we should dedicate ourselves with the renewed sense of vigor to try to bring the region together for the sake of producers and consumers so that in bringing things together, we will have peace and security ahead of us.”

As in previous years, the opening and tour of the exhibition were attended by ministers of agriculture from the region, Savo Minić, Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management of the Republic of Srpska, and Vladimir Joković, Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management of the Republic of Montenegro.

More than 500 exhibitors from Serbia and the region are present at the fair, and the second day is also reserved for pre-scheduled business meetings between 90 domestic and regional companies and about 20 buyers from Serbia, the region, but also Great Britain, Canada, Poland, Romania, India.

For the fifth year in a row, the event has successfully drawn the attention of Serbia and the region, and increasingly the attention of the international buyers, highlighting the potential of the Serbian and regional fruit and vegetable industry, the need for integration in the local and international markets, while providing answers to the current challenges the industry is facing.

A diverse conference program was scheduled for January 25 and 26 in Hall 1a addressing key industry topics, such as fruit and vegetable export results in 2023 and perspectives for 2024, market potentials and current challenges, premium quality fruit and vegetable production without pesticide residues, trends in fruit transportation to foreign markets, as well as contemporary transfer of knowledge. The topics were tackled by 25 domestic and foreign experts and representatives of companies, institutions, and organizations relevant to the fields of fruit and vegetable production and viticulture.