The first successful marketing experience
The first successful marketing experience motivated farmers to get organized and to improve the traditional production practice of plums meets the basic organic requirements since the day plums arrived. Neither mineral fertilizer nor pesticides had ever been used by local farmers for cropping.
The potential of the unique ecological plum production system was discovered already in 2012. At this time, Bio-Service, a local NGO promoting organic production, supported local plum producers to start an internal control system and work toward the certification according to EU organic standards.
3 more years had to pass until a link between a dedicated buyer, EgeSun, was established who was willing to give it a chance. The match happened during a trade fair in Germany. The "Import Promotion Desk" – governmental German programme linking producers in disadvantaged countries and German buyers - invited Kyrgyz producers to a trade fair. At that fair Kees Maris, the person of EgeSun in charge of product development, was excited right from the beginning about their taste. With the support of the GIZ Programme "Sustainable Economic Development in Kyrgyzstan", financed by the Swiss Development Cooperation and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation of Germany, a concept to upgrade the plum value chain was developed.