More than 120 farmers from Surkhandarya and Kashkadarya regions are attending trainings being held from 5 to 6 November, on implementation of GLOBALG.A.P international standard. The introduction of Good Agricultural Practice (G.A.P.) helps to increase quality of agricultural products, expand export markets and increase farms’ profits.
GLOBALG.A.P. is an internationally recognized set of standards ensuring food safety and compliance with quality and technical requirements. Currently, agricultural producers in more than 130 countries around the world are under GLOBALG.A.P. certification, and the total number of certified producers exceeds 200,000, of which 75% offer crop products (vegetables and fruits).
Why do food producers need GLOBALG.A.P. certification?
To enter the world market, food producers and exporters need to assure that their product is grown in safe conditions and meet environmental requirements. They need to comply with the standards of chemicals use and rational use of natural resources and providing decent work environment for employees.
For many foreign companies, the GLOBALG.A.P. Certificate is one of the important conditions for trade in agricultural products. International retail chains and supermarkets are interested in purchasing products, quality of which is certified by international standards.
In competitive global and regional markets of agricultural products, the GLOBALG.A.P. Certificate confirms the adherence of the grown products to all the quality requirements that undoubtedly contributes to customer loyalty improvement and sales growth.
Obtaining GLOBALG.A.P. certificate is a multilevel process requiring availability of records and compliance of the grown products with international food safety and quality standards. To get certified, producers need to meet 218 control points prescribed by the standard, including requirements for worker health and safety, environmental protection and conservation, use of fertilizers, and many others.
During the trainings, UNDP and ‘Uzstandart’ Agency experts explain the main criteria and requirements of the standard with practical examples of implementation on farms, including growing, harvesting and handling fruits and vegetables, as well as on stages of certification process.
“We grow fruits and vegetables and currently are exporting our products to Russia and Kazakhstan. However, we intend to expand our export markets and focus on European countries. The training helped me to better understand specifics of GLOBALG.AP standard and learn more about the most acceptable options for our farming certification. Now we have a vision of the roadmap of activities needed prior applying for the GLOBALG.AP certification,” said Sherali Shukurov, Director of ‘Agro Exim’ Agrocompany.
In Uzbekistan, National standard of Good Agricultural Practice (G.A.P. – Good Agricultural Practice) based on requirements of GLOBALG.A.P. has been developed and introduced In 2018. As a result, local companies, which are planning to enter global markets, can obtain GLOBALG.A.P. certificate spending less time and money.
UNDP’s ‘Aid for Trade in Uzbekistan’ project jointly with the Ministry of investments and foreign trade and ‘Uzstandart’ Agency has been working on easing access of local agro products to foreign markets through promoting international standards in product certification. The project conducts a series of workshops for local farmers and supports agro-companies in preparing for the GLOBALG.A.P. audits and getting the certificates. UNDP jointly with ‘Uzstandart’ Agency prepared and disseminated among local farmers the practical handbook on GLOBALG.A.P. requirements for agricultural products in Russian and Uzbek languages.
The UNDP trade development activities are carried out in accordance with the Action Strategy for Uzbekistan Development 2017-2021, with focus on achieving the Sustainable Development Goals adopted by the UN Member States.
The ‘Aid for Trade in Uzbekistan’ project is aimed to support Uzbekistan’s WTO accession process, developing trade, building productive and export capacities for niche products in employment-rich and potentially green sectors to contribute to more economically, socially and environmentally sustainable growth patterns.
The project is funded by the Government of the Russian Federation and implemented by the United Nations Development Programme in partnership with the Ministry of Investments and Foreign Trade of Uzbekistan.