Romanian traditional jam maker gets EU funding for overseas promotion

Romanian traditional jam maker gets EU funding for overseas promotion


By Daniel Stroe – Bucharest

A Romanian company making the traditional Topoloveni Jam, the first traditional product Romania patented after joining EU, has received communitarian funding to promote its products in North and South America over the next three years, the European Commission announced.

In total, the company – Soninpex Com Serv SRL – has got 544.000 Euros for this project, of which 272.102 are EU funds.

The European Commission back program envisages registered quality products of protected origin and of protected geographical indication, along traditional guaranteed specialties. Overall, the executive branch of the EU yesterday approved 22 programs (out of 34 applications) meant to promote agricultural products in the EU and third countries.

The jam making company is the only representing Romania in these programs, but got the lowest financial backing of all the approved programs. In total, EU will dispurse 35 million Euros for these projects.

Compared to Romania, France has four companies which have received money for overseas promotion, Spain and Portugal have three, while Greece, Italy and Latvia have two such companies seeking money for promoting their products in the EU and outside.

Speaking after the announcement of the winning projects, EU commissioner for Agriculture, Dacian Ciolos, representing Romania in the communitarian executive arm, pointed out that promoting EU quality products outside the communitarian bloc can help the European economy recover sooner. “I will next week go to Japan and South Korea as part of a future initiative to stimulate EU exports” Ciolos said.

The Topoloveni jam has stood out as the only plum jam made without any additives and preservatives, prepared after a traditional recipe dating back to 1914. In 2011, the Topoloveni jam got the certification of Protected Geographical Indication, the first such distinction received by a Romanian traditional product. The company, which is based in Topoloveni, a small town in Arges County, NW of Bucharest, is also a supplier to the Romanian Royal House and has so far got another financial backing from the Swiss government to promote the products in Europe and Russia.