Szekler Products Presented as a Good Practice on European Level

At the online Joint Workshop held on 26th of April 2021, the project partners of Interreg FRiDGE project has reviewed the instruments advancing the productivity of food industry SMEs and helping to boost their investments in machinery.

The event was hosted by Harghita County Council as one of the project partners, and sister county of our lead partner, Tolna County, presenting local good practices via live streams from the manufacturers. Furthermore the other project partners presented a wealth of useful information through their good practices.

In the beginning of the meeting, Mr. Attila Orbán, Vice President of Tolna County Council, on behalf of the smallest county in Hungary, emphasized the importance of community building in his welcome speech. As he said, he believes that improvements in different areas will be more effective if the community develops at the same time.

Mr. Csaba Borboly, President of Harghita County Council, was also connected to this idea. According to him, if we think together and emphasize our investments in community building in the sales of local products, we can forge strength from teamwork. The president of the council considers cooperatives to be more suitable for this community building, which can help the small family businesses and farmers. At the same time, he emphasized the importance of bringing the European regulations closer to local producers and consumers.

As Mr. Balázs Kiss, project manager and as representative of the Tolna County Development Agency Nonprofit Ltd., highlighted in his welcome presentation, the objective of the FRiDGE project is influencing the policies in the area of food industry SMEs. The exchange of experiences and good practices contribute to the modification of those policies, that facilitate the development of food industry SMEs in our regions.

The guests of the conference had the possibility to take a virtual tour at the „Csengő” Agricultural Cooperative, where Mr. Zoltán Gál, director, together with Mr. Árpád Cilip, director of the Development Agency of Harghita County, presented the process of cheese products, that are branded as Szekler Product Trademark.

The next stop of the virtual tour was at the „Benedek” Meat Processing Factory, where Mr. Zoltán Kovács, director, presented their way of production with the assistance of aproximately 250 employees of the factory.

As a third station of the online tour, Mr. József Egyed, owner of the „Silvimex” Bakery from Lövéte (Harghita County) presented their activities and their products that also are part of the Szekler Product Trademark.

After the virtual tours and presentation of the best practices from Harghita County, the project partners presented their success stories and experiences from the rest of partner regions.

The best practices presented were: Genussacademie Bavaria from Bavaria, Amyndeon Oenos Wine Cluster from Western Macedonia, Bucher’s Hall from East Flanders, Food Sector SMEs Support Programme from Tolna County and Food Sector SMEs development project from South Ostrobothnia.

During the previous workshops and meetings organized within the FRiDGE project those programmes and initiatives were presented that offer support for SMEs in food industry in their effort to sell and to promote their products on local, national and international level.