GMO news related to Serbia

26.02.2016 |

Can Serbia's farming heritage survive?

Mr Matic is just warming up. Soaking up the winter afternoon sun, he delivers an extended eulogy-cum-reverie about the properties of the earth in this part of the country.

For those not initiated in the finer points of what makes one kind of soil better than another, it boils down to this: The Vojvodina soil is rich, dark and anything will grow in it.

The Matic family farm, Brkin Salas, is typical of the traditional Serbian model. It covers eight hectares (19 acres) and the fields are cultivated without the use of chemical fertilisers.

Mr Matic, like other farmers, calls the produce "organic not by paper, but naturally," because although they are passionate about the integrity of their methods, they have never gone to the expense and trouble of applying for official organic certification.


Mr Glamocic fears that the recent glut of cheap produce from the EU may just be a taste of things to come, as far as Serbia's farmers are concerned. For a country which has long ear-marked agriculture as a key potential growth sector, that is a worrying prospect.

But there is another, more optimistic school of thought. It holds that Serbia can take advantage of its "naturally organic" heritage and more recent ban on genetically-modified (GMO) crops.

The country is already a leader in the production of GMO-free soy - and could exploit its reputation to find markets in the EU where people are becoming more concerned about food-sourcing.