The FINANCIAL -- Kula, which produces ecologically clean fruit and vegetable juices, is starting production of bio products and infant food in 2020.
“We will start construction of a new enterprise by the end of 2018, while it will be completed in 2019 and production will be launched in 2020,” said Vano Goglidze, the Director of Kula.
“In the first stage we will produce tinned fruit and vegetable food for babies, which will be high quality like other products of Kula. We are planning to first sell our products on the local market and are considering later exporting infant food abroad as well,” he added.
This year Kula won a Golden Brand award for the utmost success the company achieved in 2017.
“Kula has been operating on the Georgian market for nine years already and during these years our company has been offering new products, expanding our portfolio. All products offered by Kula are made in Georgia with Georgian raw materials. Over these years we have managed to maintain stable quality and leading positions on the market. I think that it is for this reason that we received a Golden Brand this year,” Goglidze said.
Q. Kula plans to unveil a new plant in Georgia’s Akhaltsikhe region in the autumn. Please can you tell us more about this project?
A. The new plant will focus on the production of bio products, namely, the production of juices.
To produce bio products we chose the Akhaltsikhe region as there is fresh, good quality air there, and the fruit grown there has different taste and quality, which completely meet bio product standards.
We have already registered with an international organisation in order to undergo training courses from international experts and to get standard certificates.
We are investing USD 1.5 million in the new enterprise.
Nothing will be produced without market examination. Sugar-free juices are very popular worldwide, including in Georgia. Consequently, we are sure that bio production will be an in-demand segment in Georgia.
Interest is high on the US, Canadian, and European markets towards our new bio products.
Q. Kula has also started producing meat and fish products and opened a new enterprise in Gori. What new products does Kula offer thanks to this new enterprise?
A. In 2017 we launched a new plant where we invested USD 2 million. This plant produces various tinned products. These products are traditional Georgian dishes such as tinned ‘Chaqafuli’, ‘Khashi’, and ‘Chashushuli’.
At the same time we started the production of tinned fish products.
Thanks to this new plant we replaced imported Russian tinned meat products with local production and supply Georgia’s Ministry of Internal Affairs. We also won a tender and will supply the Georgian police with our products. We want to cooperate with Georgia’s Ministry of Defence.
Q. To sum up, how many plants does Kula own currently and where are they located?
A. Currently our company owns five different plants, of which four are located in Gori and one in Akhaltsikhe.
Kula produces over 200 sorts of products. First we started producing only juices and later added new products such as compotes, jams, pickles, fasting salads, sugar-free products and finally, tinned meat and fish products.
This year we plan to start production of ‘Churchkhela’ (a traditional Georgian delicacy, made from nuts and grape juice), which will result in an increase in sales. We plan to achieve over 25 percent growth in sales this year.
Last year Kula’s sales grew by 15-17 percent compared to 2016.
Q. How competitive is the Georgian market and what is Kula’s competitive advantage?
A. Kula’s production is quite competitive in Georgia as well as abroad. This is due to the high quality of Georgian raw materials and modern technologies for processing these raw materials.
As you know, many companies in Georgia are trying to import cheap products and in most cases these products are low quality. As for us, we produce local, high quality production and compete with imported ones successfully.
Q. Have you added new export markets recently?
A. We are stably increasing our export portfolio.
In 2017-2018 Kula’s production was exported to Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, and Hong-Kong.
We are working on entering new markets such as the US and Europe.