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Business news, 26.01.2005 13:06

New Vegoil Bottling Line

Company St. Petersburg-based Closed Joint Stock Company "Medium" in Russia has installed a new line for bottling vegetable oils, newspaper "Delovoy Peterburg" has informed.

The cost of the project is not disclosed, but according to experts, such line might have cost no less than 2 million euros.

"The new bottling capacities will allow us to boost the production up to 5 million bottles per month. We are now bottling the oil under Dutch trademarks Unoli and Coroli and also producing our own vegetable oil brands ""Yuzhnoye" and "Zolotoy Podsolnukh"", the company's sales manager has said to reporters.

CJSC "Medium" today is the largest producer of vegetable oils in North-Western region of Russia. Before commissioning the new line, its vegoil bottling capacities were making 1 million bottles per month. Apart from the production, the company owns the largest in the region storage facility, capable of storing up to 10,000 tonnes of vehetable oils.

The market participants, however, differ in their opinions as for expediency of the company's expansion moves. In the domain of oil bottling the company, indeed, does not have any competitors, the experts say. Its storage areas and crushing capacities are the largest in the region. At the same time, its own trademarks are hardly known to anyone. The analysts attribute this to the incompetent marketing policy of Medium.

"Among the Russian brands on the market of vegetable oils there are no popularly known trademarks, with a properly constructed marketing policy. The local producer does not care about development of own brand", says Alexander Rozhkov, Director of the "Syryevik Garant" Company Group, specialising in supplies of vegetable oils.

At the same time, some barley known in Russia Chinese foodstuff companies are entering the local market very aggressively and their trademarks are becoming widely known as quickly as in a month, he notes.

The Head of Board of "Artis" Group of Companies Mikhail Lyasko observes that good sunflower seed crops in the last two years have permitted local oil crushers to increase the output.

"This will allow reducing the imports of vegetable oils from Europe. Today, indeed, there are virtually no import oils on the Russian market. All the known brands are being produced at local capacities", he says.

The size of local vegetable oil market is St. Petersburg is 33 million litres per year, informs the newspaper. The sales leaders are such brands as "Zolotaya Semechka" (30 percent), "Sloboda" (15 percent), "Zlato" (10 percent), "Unoli" (5 percent), "Oleyna" (Dnepropetrovsk Oil Extraction Plant, Ukraine - 5 percent).

The other trademarks share about 30 percent of regional sales.

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