Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic, March 19, 2015
—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today hosted a forum in Bishkek to promote better food safety management practices, part of an effort to support the development of the food processing industry in Europe and Central and help companies enter new export markets.
The IFC International Food Safety Forum, held in Central Asia for the first time, welcomed more than 100 food producers, retailers, industry experts, and government officials. Attendees discussed food safety best practices, consumer safety regulations, the best ways for small- and medium-sized producers to expand internationally, and other important topics. The event was part of IFC’s efforts to help the region’s agribusinesses fulfill their potential, creating jobs in the process.
"It's vital for companies that are interested in expansion to effectively implement international food safety standards," said Denis Gaivoronskiy, the managing director of confectionary maker Kulikovskiy. "For example, we have opened our own laboratory, engaged professionals, and developed modern safety standards, which has opened up many export opportunities for us."
Jesper Kjaer, IFC Senior Manager, said, “Agribusiness is a vital contributor to the economies of Central Asia, which have some of the best growing conditions for fruits and vegetables and, consequently, great potential for increased food-processing and exports to high-end markets. Implementing food safety practices will help firms in Central Asia improve operations and increase sales, spurring agribusiness growth and greater investment in the agricultural sector.”
This marks the fourth year of the IFC International Food Safety Forum. Previous events were held in Belarus, Ukraine, and Georgia.
IFC’s advisory work on food safety, supported by the Austrian Finance Ministry, has helped attract about $159 million of investment in over 80 of our clients in Europe and Central Asia. We have also helped clients generate $323 million in additional sales, while boosting efficiency, saving money, improving risk management, and increasing brand value.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector. Working with private enterprises in about 100 countries, we use our capital, expertise, and influence to help eliminate extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. In FY14, we provided more than $22 billion in financing to improve lives in developing countries and tackle the most urgent challenges of development. For more information, visit