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Bucharest, April 22 /Agerpres/ - Carrefour retailer's hypermarkets in Bucharest will offer Romanian organic vegetables for the first time in April, probably starting from the Easter Week, the President of the Bio-Romania Association of Organic Farmers Marian Cioceanu told AGERPRES.
'In April, as a premiere, Carrefour hypermarkets will market Romanian ecologically certified vegetables, a product range available so far only from imports. For the time being, we shall supply only the stores in Bucharest, as our stocks are limited, but eventually we shall extend throughout the country. These vegetables come from the wide basin of Izbiceni [southern Romania], where plastic greenhouses currently in the process of conversion to organic agriculture stretch on a large area,' Cioceanu said.
He mentioned that the products are already listed, with the first deliveries most probably occurring this week.
Farm products under conversion are grown without chemicals, but the land where they grow still has to be cleaned up of the previously used pesticides and fertilizers; the ecological certification is possible only after a conversion period of 2 or 3 years.
The prices of the products in the conversion process are approximately 5 percent higher than in conventional farming, while ecologically certificated products further add 5 to 10 percent.
Last autumn, Bio-Romania has signed a partnership contract with Carrefour Romania to market in the national stores network some organic products from rural producers and food processing operators, in a project launched by MEP Daciana Sarbu and a supported by the Minister of Agriculture Daniel Constantin and by the French Embassy.
Hypermarkets in Bucharest and countrywide have listed more than 70 Romanian organic products within this project; the list includes bakery products, diary, rice, raspberry, black locust and linden honey, apples, wines, frozen organic berries, and various seeds.
Romania has a huge potential for organic farming, with more than 300,000 hectares of arable land ecologically certified for production, and other 500,000 hectares of pastureland; it had 15,000 operators registered in this system at the end of 2013. The country exports 80 percent of its production of this type, especially as raw material, with very few processed products. AGERPRES
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