Ukraine: Great export potential for butternut squash and sweet potatoes


The Ukrainian based Green Team has been looking to the future over the past few years, testing new products which they believe show a lot of promise in terms of export. So far, said Denis Sazonov from Green Team, we've seen a lot of export potential for vegetables like butternut squash, sweet potatoes and garlic.

Denis said that the company's main export market at the moment is the UK, but they have also started setting their sights on the Nordic countries.

"We started testing sweet potatoes a couple of years ago to see if we could grow them here and we have been happy with the results. There is a lot of opportunity for export to countries like Sweden and Norway when you are able to offer them a product which can not be grown domestically," shared Denis.

One of the things that Green Team looked into when choosing sweet potato varieties, along with viability in the Ukrainian climate, was to find varieties suitable for long term storage, which will include Covington and Beauregard, amongst others.

"We think that there is a lot of opportunity for sweet potatoes in Europe, due to our location, which is a lot closer than other exporting countries like the US and Africa. We plan on sending a small volume of just a couple of pallets to our markets this year and will increase our exports dramatically by next year, with production expanding from 3 hectares this year to 20-30 hectares," said Denis.

"We have seen a lot of success with our branded packaging for butternut squash and we're working on developing the same type of packaging for sweet potatoes."


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