Aid for Trade
Wider Europe: Aid for Trade for Central Asia,South Caucasus and Western CIS
International standards - yes we can!
20-Sep-2012, by Daniele Gelz, UNDP, via web
Mr. Rustam Abdullozoda Photo credit: UNDP AfT
Mr. Rustam Abdullozoda – Director General of Zoda limited Liability Company (Sughd region, Tajikistan)
"International standards open ways to global markets for us..."
In December 2011, I was invited to a food safety training. The training was conducted by the Trade and Export Promotion Centre established with the assistance of UNDP. As our enterprise is just at the start-up phase of its activities, we use every opportunity to enrich our knowledge. I think many entrepreneurs who are interested in establishing sustainable, modern enterprises that meet international standards, would understand me.
I was trained during the Soviet time and worked on the basis of a state-planned economy. Soviet enterprises had quality management system, but, as I understood from the trainings, international standards are somewhat different. Everything is aimed at the protection of consumer’ rights. Food safety is the main focus at food industry enterprises. Food safety is ensured by the HACCP system. Everything about this system is logical and understandable. Above all, critical control points where risk of contamination of goods is high are monitored.
I am an elderly man becoming a schoolboy again, so it was very interesting to participate in the training. Among other teaching methods, young trainers used games and contests, and that approach captured the attention of training participants. Many of them set a goal to introduce HACCP systems in their enterprises, and I was not the exception.
I realized that the introduction of the new system will require a lot of expenses, including repairs and reconstruction of production facilities, storage areas; construction of sanitation and hygiene facilities; introduction of new technology for washing and sterilizing of glassware, etc. But what we can gain in return is worth every penny of it. Owing to the “Aid for Trade” project that jointly with its partners from the very onset organized the trainings, our work was facilitated and our activities were supported.
Recently we have completed the internal audit. It proofed the high quality of medicinal/healthy types of goods that we make from dried fruits, apricots, peaches, and rosehip. Now we need to certify our products. We are confident that we will meet the requirements of external expert.
In January 2012, representatives of business establishment from Saint-Petersburg visited our enterprise and expressed their interest in purchasing up to one million bottles of rosehip and apricot beverages annually. Now we are thinking about expanding our enterprise. As for the quality assurance, the HACCP system was a step in the right direction that opens to us ways to global markets.
With thanks to Mr Rustam Abdullozoda and Mr Parviz Akramov (National Coordinator Aid for Trade project, Tajikistan) for collecting this interview.
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This story is also now featured on UNDP's Europe and CIS blog: http://europeandcis.undp.org/blog/2012/02/07/the-man-who-planted-trees-kyrgyz-version/
Daniele Gelz, 2012-02-07 13:01
Akvo Ref: 305