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Food and Beverages

The Food and beverage sector is one of the backbone industries not only for the agricultural and industrial complex, but for the entiry economy of Ukraine. It comprises more than 20 industries making both ready-to-eat and semi-finished products. The key industries of the food and drinks sector in Ukraine include the production of sugar, meat, milk, oils and fats, canned fruit and vegetables, confectionery, spirits, wines and salt.

Food and Beverages

Historically known as the «bread basket of Europe», Ukraine is set to become the «food basket» of the world. Ukraine is naturally endowed with 33% of the world’s black soil and a favourable climate that permits a broad range of agricultural production based on sustainable practices.

With its proximity to key markets, a well-developed regulatory environment, readily available financing and openness to innovation, Ukraine is becoming a powerhouse of agriculture exports.

ІТ industry in Ukraine

Cereals and oils

Ukraine maintains leading positions in the production and export of cereal grains. The annual cereal crop reaches over 70 million tonnes. After meeting its domestic needs, Ukraine can export approximately 50 million tonnes of cereal grains annually.

One of the world’s leading wheat exporters, Ukraine exported 20.5 million tonnes of wheat in 2019-20, but a severe drought has led to a decline in this year’s crop. Planting for the 2021-22 season is complete. According to the Ministry of Agriculture, Ukraine’s production could rise to at least 75 million tonnes due to favourable weather.

Grain exports from Ukraine have increased markedly over the past decade. Based on USDA estimates, exports to foreign markets in 2020/21 will include up to 45.8 million tonnes of Ukrainian origin, 3.8 times more than in 2010/11.

Oilseeds retain the status of the most popular crop for Ukrainian farmers because they typically offer good profitability. Over the last four years, oilseed production has stabilised at close to nine million hectares. The most popular oilseeds are sunflower, rapeseed and soya beans. Yields are growing for all oilseeds due to a combination of improved seeds, agrochemicals, machinery, the growing skills of local agronomists and more favourable growing conditions (especially for rapeseed). The main export destinations for Ukrainian oilseeds are the EU, Turkey, Egypt and Belarus.


The Ukrainian honey sector is growing steadily, both in terms of production and exports. Honey made in Ukraine has a positive image on the global market. Currently, honey producers are looking for new export opportunities.

  • Ukraine is the world’s 5th biggest honey exporter.
  • Ukraine accounts for 5.1% of global honey exports.
  • Ukrainian honey producers export their products to more than 40 countries of the world.
  • The Ukrainian honey sector includes more than 300 large, medium-sized and small producers.

Ukraine has been among the top ten producers in the world honey market for many years. Exports from the country have been growing rapidly over the past few seasons. The honey sector reported outstanding results in 2020 and reached an absolute record – almost 81,000 tonnes with a total value of USD 138.9 million. The biggest importers of honey from Ukraine in 2020 were: Poland (25%), Germany (20%), Belgium (11%) and the USA (10%). Also in 2020 Ukraine was the biggest exporter of honey to the European Union.


The Ukrainian Food Association (U-Food) is a non-governmental institution that represents 83 food and drink producers. As part of its activities, the U-Food Association provides its members with analytical information and advises on foreign trade conditions and opportunities. U-Food set up the Ukrainian Food Platform and organises the Ukrainian Food Expo.

The Union of Beekeepers of Ukraine is a public association that represents the interests of beekeepers. It provides up-to-date information for beekeepers, organises conferences and monitors other activities by non-profit organisations.


  • Ukraine is among top 5 walnut producers in the world.
  • Ukraine produced 126,000 tonnes in 2020-2021.
  • In 2019 Ukraine exported almost USD 140 million of walnuts.
  • The total area of nut plantations has increased by more than 100% over the last five years.

Every year Ukraine exports more than 30,000 tonnes of walnuts, making it Europe’s largest exporter. The EU, the Middle East and Central Asia are the main buyers of Ukrainian walnuts. Main foreign buyers of Ukrainian walnuts come from France (14% of all Ukrainian exports), Turkey (11%) and Greece (10%).

Most of the walnuts produced in Ukraine are grown by small, privately run family farms that harvest trees growing on their land or near their farms. This category of producer does not typically use fertilisers or agrochemicals and relies on manual labour to harvest and shell the walnuts. After harvesting, walnuts are usually sold to intermediaries, who combine them into large batches for export.

Ukrainian farmers have been developing walnut orchards for commercial purposes since 2009. The average size of these plantations ranges from 20 ha to 50 ha. In 2018 the total area of commercially grown walnut trees reached 5,200 ha, double the figure for 2016. This growth in commercial production is attributable to continued financial support from the state for orchard and berry producers and to the strong profit margins achieved by the sector.

The latest data confirms this growth trend in commercial walnut production. Farmers are investing in the development of high-yield commercial orchards consisting of multiple walnut varieties, installing irrigation systems and using fertilisers. Certain commercial growers have already planted as many as 500-600 ha of walnut orchards.

In the coming years Ukrainian plantations will offer hazelnuts and almonds for foreign buyers.


The Ukrainian Nut Association represents 136 members and more than 2,000 associate members from all regions of Ukraine, including nurseries (seedlings for nut-bearing crops), industrial gardens, nut processing companies and exporters.

Fruits and berries

  • Ukraine is the third-largest raspberry exporter in Europe.
  • Ukraine is one of the world leaders in expanding areas of blueberries.
  • 1 million tonnes of apples are harvested every year in Ukraine.

Ukraine is among the fastest-growing producers and exporters of berries in the world. Around 55,000 tonnes of fresh, frozen and dried berries (in fresh equivalents) are sold annually.

Ukrainian companies are investing in the processing of fruits and berries, including sublimation (freeze-drying) and the production of fruit chips, juices, jams and other products. These products have a long shelf life and maximum vitamin potential and are easily transported.

Each year 1 million tonnes of apples are harvested in Ukraine, with a record of almost 1.5 million tonnes in 2018. Ukraine is also one of the five largest European suppliers of apple concentrate.

2020 demonstrated a significant increase in the volume of frozen berries exported to other European countries: Poland (+20% to 17,800), Germany (+ 84% to 4,200 tonnes), the Netherlands (+ 46% to 1,700 tonnes) and Belgium (+ 63% to 1,100 tonnes) and China remained the principal market for Ukrainian products outside the European Union and again increased its purchases of frozen berries from Ukraine, albeit at a slower rate. In 2018, China purchased 490 tonnes of frozen berries from Ukraine. The figure for 2019 was 1,300 tonnes and 1,400 tonnes for 2020.


Ukrsadvinprom (Association of Gardeners, Grape Growers and Winemakers of Ukraine) represents around 200 producers of fruit, berries, nuts and grapes, as well as fruit and berry processing companies, wine producers and various scientific institutions involved in developing new production techniques.

The Ukrainian Berry Association represents professional stakeholders in the fruit and berry market, including growers, processing companies, suppliers (planting material, plant protection products, equipment and technical resources), cooperatives, public organisations, educational institutions and other sector representatives.


Exports of fresh and processed vegetables are growing rapidly. Foreign buyers appreciate the fact that Ukrainian farmers grow high quality cucumber and tomatoes without any crop protection substances.

Ukraine is also the leading producer of tomato paste in the former Soviet Union and an active competitor in the European market. Export of processed and canned tomatoes is also growing. In 2020, Ukraine exported 65.8 thousand tons of processed and canned tomatoes. Processed tomatoes are in great demand in the European Union, including Poland, Germany and Czech Republic. The Middle East is also a growing market. Ukrainian canned tomatoes are exported to Israel, Jordan, Oman, the United Arabian Emirates and Saudi Arabia. Demanding Japanese buyers are also importing from Ukraine.

Ukraine’s share of global potato production is 6.2%. Thanks to its non-GMO potato crops, Ukraine is well placed to develop a strong position in the potato flour and starch market and to increase its potato exports to the EU.

Garlic from Ukraine is famed for its local varieties and unique taste. Ukrainian garlic is preferred by many European processors, and local production is growing to meet the demand. Commercial garlic production has tripled over the past five years and is expected to grow rapidly over the next decade.


  • Every year, Ukraine produces 750,000 tonnes of confectionery, a third of which is exported to more than 100 countries including the USA, Canada, China, the EU and countries in Central Asia and the MENA region.
  • Three Ukrainian confectionery manufacturers are members of the global Top 100 candy companies ranking.
  • Over the past four years, the total value of Ukrainian confectionery exports has increased by 50% (in value terms).

Ukraine is probably the most competitive producer of sweets in the world due to its very efficient large-scale domestic production of almost all the key raw materials for confectionery: sugar, honey, wheat flour, milk powder and vegetable oils and fats. All these products are of exceptional quality and have been approved for export to the EU market.

Ukraine uses beet sugar in its confectionery products. Unlike cane sugar, beet sugar contains no starch and dissolves more quickly. This means that consumers experience the sweetness and the taste faster. According to experts, beet sugar has a slightly different aroma, taste and aftertaste.

Each of Ukraine’s large and medium-sized confectionery firms generally produces 400-600 SKU spanning all confectionery groups. Ukraine has access to deep water ports in the Black Sea and can ship goods nearly anywhere very competitively.

Ukrainian confectionery firms have implemented various integrated quality and food safety management systems including ISO 9001, ISO 22000, IFS, FSSC 22000 and BRC.

Thanks to modern equipment and improved technology, Ukrainian confectionery products comply with all quality and safety requirements and have a long shelf life.

Ukrainian confectionery products are not only of the highest quality but also very competitive on price due to lower input costs for energy, labour and land.


UKRKONDPROM is the industry association of producers of confectionery, food concentrates, starch products and coffee in Ukraine. Association consists of 24 participants which provide about 60% confectionery, 70% food concentrates and 90% starch production in the total volume of industry in Ukraine.


Ukraine’s dairy exports are growing every year, creating more opportunities for producers. In 2018 Ukraine entered the top 10 list of dairy exporters in the world.

Dairy producers in Ukraine are expanding their activities in the soft and semi-soft cheese markets. Thanks to deep processing technologies, they are able to produce demineralised whey, which is used in the production of baby food and confectionery.

27 dairy producers are licensed to export goods to the European Union. 35 Ukrainian milk producers have been certified to export their goods to Saudi Arabia. Ukraine has requested licences to export dairy products to Japan, Argentina and 19 more countries.


The Ukrainian Food Association (U-Food) is a non-governmental institution that represents 83 food and drink producers. As part of its activities, the U-Food Association provides its members with analytical information and advises on foreign trade conditions and opportunities. U-Food set up the Ukrainian Food Platform and organises the Ukrainian Food Expo.

The Association of Milk Producers (AMP) is a non-profit, non-governmental association of specialist dairy farms. It was officially registered on 30 April 2009. Since then, it has grown to ten times its original size and in 2020 represented 150 farms (with an average herd size of 400 cows) from all over Ukraine.

The Union of Dairy Enterprises of Ukraine (UA Dairy) represents its members in dealings with legislative and executive bodies at different levels. It also coordinates the dairy sector’s activities with those of other sectors and campaigns for the elimination of differences in the interests of its members. Finally, UA Dairy is involved in measures to improve the regulatory framework for the processing, sale and production of milk and dairy products.


Pork, beef and chicken producers are the main stakeholders in Ukraine’s meat sector. The sector is growing, and manufacturers are increasing their exports and breaking into new markets. Innovative methods and new technologies are being introduced at most production facilities.

  • Ukraine mainly exports fresh, chilled or frozen beef, pork and poultry.
  • Ukraine accounts for 0.5% of global meat exports.
  • Ukrainian meat producers export their products to 113 countries.
  • The Ukrainian meat sector includes 3,452 large, medium-sized and small companies involved in the production, processing and preserving of meat and meat products.
  • In 2020 Ukraine was the third-biggest exporter of chicken to the European Union.

The Ukrainian meat processing industry is developing rapidly. Producers are introducing new technologies and striving to adapt their production facilities to meet global market demand. Some manufacturers are adopting vertically integrated business models.

Ukraine’s meat sector covers the full cycle of meat production, allowing producers to reduce costs.

Ukrainian meat producers have built up considerable export experience. Manufacturers supply their products to distributors, other production facilities, the HoReCa sector (food service and hotels) and retail segments in Ukraine and other countries.


The Ukrainian Food Association (U-Food) is a non-governmental institution that represents 83 food and drink producers. As part of its activities, the U-Food Association provides its members with analytical information and advises on foreign trade conditions and opportunities. U-Food set up the Ukrainian Food Platform and organises the Ukrainian Food Expo.

The Association of Pig Producers of Ukraine represents and protects the rights and interests of its members in the pig farming sector. It promotes the development and application of new technologies for the most efficient use of production capacity and works to expand markets and in particular to protect the domestic market.

The Meat Industry Association of Ukraine represents and protects the common interests of its members. It promotes the development of meat and meat-related markets through measures designed to make domestic produce more competitive, improve product quality, expand markets and protect the local market.

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