Uzbekistan - Country Commercial Guide
Food Processing

This is a best prospect industry sector for this country.  Includes a market overview and trade data.

Last published date: 2021-10-10

Overview

Uzbekistan seeks to increase the production and export of higher value-added food products. The country’s food processing industry has substantial room to grow, given current capacity shortfalls. Only 15% of the 20 million tons of fruits and vegetables grown each year is processed for longer shelf-life, while 30% is lost due to insufficient storage and processing capacity. Only 16% of meat and milk is processed. On June 4, 2021, the government approved the list of 676 types of technological equipment (including several models of food processing equipment) to be exempted from customs tax and VAT when imported into the country. Uzbekistan’s 1,500 existing refrigerated warehouses can accommodate only 4.5% of the harvest, and the government plans to triple its cold-storage chain capacity by 2025. The current development plan calls for adding 3.4 million tons of processing capacity by 2030, accommodating 30% of the harvest. The President’s decree of September 9, 2020 instructed an establishment of a Main Directorate for the development of the food processing industry at the Ministry of Agriculture. It is tasked with creating conditions for productive collaboration between producers of agricultural products and food processing companies, devising a strategy for the development of food processing industry, facilitating construction of necessary trade and logistics centers, and promoting export of food products. The Minister of Investments and Foreign Trade has been tasked with attracting funds from IFIs.

 

2018

2019

2020

2021 estimated

Total Local Production

3,130

3,781

4,215

4,700

Total Exports

1,097

1,518

1,363

1,500

Total Imports

1,581

1,885

1,900

2,000

Imports from the US

0.9

0.05

0.1

N/A

Total Market Size*

3,614

4,148

4,752

5,200

Exchange Rates**

8,069

8,839

10,056

10,600

*Total market size = (total local production + imports) – exports
**Exchange Rates = Uzbek soums per $1
Units: $ millions
Source: The State Statistics committee of Uzbekistan. Data for 2021 was estimated by Post using company project implementation progress reports. Imports from the U.S. data is from the U.S. census bureau. 
 

Leading Sub-Sectors

  • Juices
  • Fruit and vegetable processing
  • Meat and milk processing
  • Packaging material (cardboard, paper, aluminum foil, stretch films)
  • Compact processing machinery for use by small businesses

Opportunities

The best sector opportunities in production and processing/packaging equipment supply lie in the areas of juice, fruit, vegetable, meat and milk processing.  Uzbekistan’s government encourages private sector development in these areas.  The greatest demand for packaging material is for cardboard, paper, aluminum foil, and stretch films.  Small businesses have a great need for small-scale equipment. 

For specific opportunities, businesses should contact companies involved in Uzbekistan’s food processing sector.  Some of the larger companies currently doing business in food processing in Uzbekistan include Nestle, Coca-Cola, and PepsiCo.  Local companies prefer working with a foreign partner and value foreign management, technology, technical expertise, and export market access.

Resources

U.S. companies and individuals interested in learning more about the food processing and packaging sectors in Uzbekistan, upcoming procurements, and export opportunities are encouraged to check the following resources:

  • Ministry of Investments and Foreign Trade of Uzbekistan: http://www.mift.uz/en
  • ITE Uzbekistan Exhibition Company:  https://iteca.uz/eng/ite/
  • Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Uzbekistan
  • Government Portal of the Republic of Uzbekistan: https://www.gov.uz/en
  • Ministry of Economic Development and Poverty Reduction of Uzbekistan: https://mineconomy.uz/en
  • Ministry of Agriculture of Uzbekistan: https://www.agro.uz/ru/
  • State Committee for Veterinary Medicine and Livestock Development of Uzbekistan: http://vetgov.uz/ru/
  • Tenders: https://tenderweek.com/en/
  • U.S. Embassy in Uzbekistan: BusinessinUzbekistan@state.gov