The construction of the greenhouse complex Parnik with the acreage of 100 ha which is to become the biggest in Russia has begun on August 27. The agri-industrial holding Eco-kultura are planning to grow about 63 thousand tons tomatoes in it, said the president of the company, Mr. Aleksander Rudakov.
“The acreage of the complex comprises 100 ha, the construction will be carried out in two phases: the first will comprise 40 ha (the cost is 87.7 million euro, it is planned to be launched in the first quarter of 2023), the second one of 60 ha (to be completed by the end of 2024). The production capacity of the complex, once the construction of both phases is completed, should amount to 62-63 thousand tons of tomatoes a year, the revenue should reach 69 million euro. It is the biggest project in Russia”, announced Mr. Rudakov.
Greenhouse complexes by Eco-Kultura with the overall acreage of almost 400 ha employing 7 thousand associates, growing 50 hybrid varieties of tomatoes, cucumbers and lettuce are functioning all over Russia. “The project in Kabardino-Balkaria is the most significant in the history of the holding. We are creating 2000 working places, a big distribution center and packaging department. Eco-kultura carefully monitors the appearance of all new technologies; naturally, it will be a super modern greenhouse complex. We are not planning on installing robots to pick tomato crops though, as the region requires working places and for the time being it is mutually beneficial for everyone. We will implement maximum automation in order to simplify the working process”, assured Mr. Rudakov.
The speaker explain that at least 500 thousand tons of tomatoes are imported in Russia every year and distribution presents no issues. “Russian chain supermarkets are eager to acquire local produce, it is tasty, it can be stored longer and it is in high demand. We plan to yield 63 kilos of tomatoes of every square meter February to December. We will also experiment with growing berries, it is a new field, we would need to check on the profitability and gradually allocate bigger areas for growing raspberries, strawberries and blueberries”, noted Mr. Rudakov, having added that the company prefers imported seeds while the equipment is supplied by the Russian producers.
Favorable conditions for business development
Construction of the first phase of the greenhouse complex Parnik has started with a festive ceremony where a letter of intent on carrying over the project has been signed and a symbolic first foundation stone has been laid. Mr. Rudakov has noted that the government of Kabardino-Balkaria has provided favorable conditions for the enterprise: land plot for rent and the required infrastructure, for which 577 thousand euro will be allocated from the local budget.
“In is important for Kabardino-Balkaria to invest in the economics of the region, such a significant project is a big step in the republic development. With a view of the decisions taken on the level of the government of the Russian Federation, there appeared mechanisms allowing for the development of investment projects, other stimulating activities that can be conducted on the level of the regional government have also become possible. We will be lending support in these matters”, mentioned the head of Kabardino-Balkaria, Mr. Kazbek Kokov during the ceremony of foundation stone laying.
Return on investment is expected within 10 years, the investment loan has been provided for 12 years. “Rosselkhozbank has been working with Eco-kultura for 8 years and has been investing in almost all the company projects, all of which are supported by the Ministry of Agriculture of the Russian Federation. There are always risks but these risks are incomparable with the possibilities. We have had no issues with payments from Eco-kultura throughout all these years, they have proven to be a reliable partner and we are eager to enter other projects, also on new territories”, explained the deputy head of the regional subsidiary of Rosselkhozbank, Mr. Igor Yatsuk.
Greenhouse vegetable production in Kabardino-Balkaria amounts to 24-25 thousand tons a year, i.e. 7-8% of all vegetable production. The overall acreage of industrial greenhouses reaches 27 ha.