Serbia - Country Commercial Guide
Agricultural Sectors
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Agriculture and food production is the most crucial export sector for Serbia, accounting for over 10 percent of the country’s GDP and around 20 percent of all exports.  The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Water Management (MAFWM) is responsible for the government’s international and domestic agricultural trade strategy, food processing, rural development, forestry, and water management. Serbia is the largest agricultural market in the Western Balkans, with a strong agricultural production and food processing tradition. Serbia is a global leader in the production of non-GMO corn and raspberries. The food processing industry accounts for approximately one-third of Serbia’s entire processing industry. Currently, over 15,000 food businesses are operational. Approximately 90 percent of these are micro, small, or medium-sized enterprises. This industry employs over 100,000 people and stands as one of the rare examples of sectors that have not been impacted adversely by the COVID-19 crisis. The largest subsectors by value are dairy, meat, fruits, vegetables, wine, and confectionery.

The Serbian market offers good opportunities for U.S. exporters of consumer-oriented agriculture products. Total U.S. agri-food exports to Serbia for CY2021 were valued at over $28 million. One of the major obstacles to increasing the U.S. market share in Serbia is 5-30 percent customs import tax levied at the port, compared to zero import taxes for products from countries with whom Serbia has signed free trade agreements. Important commodities from the United States: almonds ($6.2 million), consumption food/general ($5.4 million), snack food ($2.4 million), whisky bourbon ($2.1 million), vegetable seed ($1.2 million).  Opportunities also exist to expand U.S. exports of high-value products such as tree nuts, raisins, snacks, beverage concentrates, planting seeds and seedlings, bovine semen and embryos, flavors, and fragrances. 

On April 20, 2022, Serbia lifted its prohibition on the export of wheat, corn, flour, and refined sunflower oil, which was introduced in response to global price inflation and disruptions resulting from the war in Ukraine. In its place, the government introduced monthly export quotas, later expanded to three-month quotas. On April 30, the GoS increased export quotas on wheat and wheat flour. On May 11, the GoS decided to lift the export quotas on wheat flour export starting on May 15.

Table: Serbia’s Agri-Food Trade Partners













 Source: Serbian Ministry of Agriculture

*CEFTA: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia,

Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia and UNMIK (Kosovo)

Agriculture trade

The most important trading partner for Serbia is the EU. Exports to EU countries account for 55 percent of Serbia’s total agricultural exports, whereas imports from the EU represent 50 percent of Serbia’s total agricultural imports. Since 2001, Serbia has enjoyed preferential access for its agri-food exports to the EU.  The Serbian products with the best production and export potential remain grains, oilseeds, sugar, fruits, vegetables, non-alcoholic beverages, water, and confectionary products. Effective January 1, 2014, under the Stabilization and Association Agreement, the tariffs on most EU agri-food products were reduced from 23 percent to zero percent.  Only a few strategic agri- food products will continue to have duties (averaging approximately 3.2 percent).  Serbia also has free trade agreements (FTA) with the Russian Federation, Turkey, EFTA countries (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland), CEFTA countries (see table above), Belarus and Kazakhstan.

Agricultural trade with the United States

Total agri-food imports from the United States to Serbia for CY2021 were valued at above $28 million, approximately 20 percent higher than in 2020. Despite increased exports of U.S. agricultural  and food products from the United States to Serbia, customs tariffs  remain a major obstacle to increased U.S. market share in Serbia. Currently Serbia is charging 5-30 percent customs import tax for the U.S. products, compared to zero import taxes for products coming from the European Union, CEFTA countries and other countries with whom Serbia has signed Free Trade Agreements.

U.S. agri-food exports consisted mainly of almonds, corn, sunflower seeds, vegetable planting seeds, dietetic foods, and concentrated proteins without dairy fats, alcoholic drinks, frozen fish and seafood, snacks and fruits.  The long-term forecast for these products is that they will continue to grow.  In the medium term, Serbia is also likely to increase imports of planting seeds, fish and fishery products, and poultry meat for processing, high-value consumer products, and beverages.  Possibilities also exist for the expansion of U.S. exports of high value products such as tree nuts, raisins, snacks, beverage concentrates, planting seeds and seedlings, bovine semen and embryos, flavors, and fragrances.

In CY2021, agri-food exports from Serbia to the United States was a record high of over $100 million, an increase of above 70 percent comparing with the same period in 2020. In 2021, Serbia enjoyed over $80 million surplus in agricultural trade with the United States. The main agricultural imports from Serbia include produced and frozen fruits and vegetables, fruit juices, confectionary products, yeast, brandy, processed fruits (jams, puree, and jelly), sweet corn, wine, cheese, mineral water, and bakery products. 

In 2009, Serbia adopted a law on Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) that bans the cultivation and use of these products without a scientific review process.  The law is not in line with EU or WTO regulations and prevents Serbia from becoming a member of the WTO.  This law remains an obstacle to Serbia’s WTO accession and thus an obstacle for the United States to receive a status of Most Favored Nation (MFN) and lower import taxes for exports to Serbia that will make the U.S. products more competitive. 

Agricultural Documentation

Phytosanitary Certificates: Phytosanitary certificates are required for most fresh fruits, vegetables, and other plant materials.

Sanitary Certificates

For commodities composed of animal products or by-products, Serbia as a pre-accession country is mostly requiring sanitary certificates same as EU countries.  A certificate issued by the competent authority of the exporting country must accompany all shipments. This applies regardless of whether the product is for human consumption, for pharmaceutical use, or strictly for non-human use (e.g., veterinary biologicals, animal feeds, fertilizers, research).  For more information, please see FAIRS Export Certificate Report and for more export guides to import regulations and standards please see Export Report:

Agricultural Standards

In 2019, Serbia adopted the new Food Safety Law. The law is now fully harmonized with the EU General Food Safety Regulation (EC 178/2002) and includes an integrated approach to food safety “from farm to table”. The amendments introduced a new concept that includes all sectors of the food chain, including production of animal feed, primary food production, storage, transport, and retailing, and creates a comprehensive and integrated food safety system. The new law divides jurisdiction for food safety between the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Health. The law established a Food Safety Council, which is in charge of giving scientific advice and assistance to the competent authorities. For specific information on agricultural standards, please refer to the Foreign Agricultural Service Serbia website:

Table: U.S. Foreign Trade with Serbia in US$


U.S. Agri-Food Imports from Serbia

U.S. Agri-Food Exports to Serbia
































Source: Serbian Customs Office

FAS Office Contact:

FAS Office in Belgrade

U.S. Embassy Belgrade

Bulevar Kneza Aleksandra Karadjordjevica 92,
11 000 Belgrade
Tel: +381-11-706-4000

Email :
Web page :

Local employees:

Tatjana Maslac, M.S.

Agricultural Specialist

Tel: +38-11-706-4158

E-mail :


Nadezda Dimitrijevic

Admin Assistant

Tel: +381-11-706-4403

E-mail :


U.S. Officer:

Charles Rush, Regional Agricultural Counselor (residing in Rome, Italia)

U.S. Embassy, Foreign Agricultural Service - USDA

U.S. Embassy-Rome, Italy


Web-page :