Nina Osadchuk - ASC «Shyroke», Skadovsk district

UHBDP

Successful running of co-operative activity and profits increase through hard work.

Nina Osadchuk grew up in the countryside, knows everything in practice and is not afraid of work. That is why she, together with her family, decided to engage in cultivation of various crops. After all this is the most common way of farming in the countryside. The agricultural servicing cooperative "Shyroke" is based, first of all, on the use of the owning farmer’s work, his family’s work, and the workers recruitment for the season.

Osadchuk Nina at her own storage after melon harvesting.

“At the beginning of the early Spring we begin to work and grow carrots, beets, radishes, young potatoes, and others,” says farmer Nina Osadchuk.

For the cultivation of the products, 80 ares of own land are used, as well as 50 hectares rented nearby the village, being located near the canal, which allows the irrigation of agricultural crops. They additionally lease land in small plots for the cultivation of sunflower, watermelon and melons. Sowing of these crop are being rotated to get a better harvest.

“Watermelons are planted annually. But, unfortunately, this year we were hurt by crop pests. Recently, as an experiment, the cantaloupe was planted. Its seeds are quite expensive, so I chose the most responsible staff and, together with them, actively participated in planting the territories,” the farmer shares.

Cantaloupe is one of the many varieties of common melon. It contains orange pulp with intense sweet taste and musk flavour inside.

Cantaloupe can be processed into candied fruit and being delivered to Poland. This is a fairly new variety that has proven itself well and allows to differ from its competitors. Good melon is planned to be exported, and another will be used to produce jam and send it for processing to Odessa or Poland.

“Our region specializes in melons, so many lands are planted with varieties such as Beregynia, Beregynia-Efiopka. And the orange cantaloupe is still rarely grown, although the demand for it is quite large,"- says the farmer.

Nina Osadchuk does not miss any opportunity to get new ideas and knowledge for successful business. Therefore, when she was invited to take a part in the Ukraine Horticulture Business Development Project, she agreed with pleasure.

“I attended MASHAV courses in Melitopol, where exchanged practice, experience, with the project participants, have got new acquaintances. Previously, we attended seminars in Shyroke village where we were taught the basic methods of crop pests control, how to spray properly, how much water to use, to handle the leaves from below with fan heaters to get the maximum effect of procedure,” - Nina recalls with enthusiasm.

During the last 2-3 years there was a problem with sales markets. Earlier, the main customers were Kopany, Crimea, Russia. After the situation has changed and the vegetables are damaged rather quickly, it makes no sense to plant large areas without guaranteed customers. So Nina appealed for help with the UHBDP Project experts for advice and support.

“Today, we are implementing the"Ovocheva Poshta” project. It’s idea is to close the position of the resort market and not allow camps, hotels, cafeterias, restaurants, bars to buy products from the dealers, and work directly with the domestic producer” - says the farmer.

As a result of the participation in the event organized by the district administration from representatives of the "Shyroke" cooperative, it was possible to tell the leaders of the camps, boarding houses about the supply of their products, to leave the contacts. And very soon there were concluded the first contracts for the supply of goods in several camps. Due to the lack of a well-established system of selling with cooperatives, incompetence in conducting cashless settlements and the intricacies of taxation, it turned out to be impossible to serve all customer orders in the past year. But this season, the team received the necessary information, consultations of the Project's specialists and prepared for work more carefully. Therefore, they take into account at least five guaranteed customers who will be able to regularly and qualitatively serve the necessary products. The location of producers is close to customers, so direct sales will help to learn better the needs of customers and plant agricultural crops for a specific order.

“We are a “Shyroke" cooperative and are located on the territory of the Shyroke village council and we want to offer our services on the provision of cooled and uncooked products directly from the farmer", - announced Nina Osadchuk at the district administration.

Thanks to this opportunity and the support of the Project’s experts, a lot of interested parties learned about the cooperative, which will help develop the business of the farmer on a larger scale.

The Ukraine Horticulture Business Development Project became a good help in the development of “Shyroke” cooperative. Registration in the Project and the relevant groups allows you to keep track of the news, learn a lot of useful information on how to evolve, how to find suppliers. All of this has a positive impact on business running.

“We have created a page of our cooperative on Facebook, have developed a site-business card and are trying to distribute information about our services,” Nina says.

Today, cooperative workers are inspired by successful examples of other cooperatives and they are trying to increase their sales volumes. Nina and her family plan to increase their product quantity, and cooperate with local authorities to establish a processing of cantaloupe.