This is the 2nd part of the 3rd regional stakeholder group meeting and study visits introducing new technologies and business models of SMEs in rural areas in Slovenia

14 representatives of public and private organizations joint the third regional stakeholder group meeting and study visit, organized by BSC Kranj, introducing new technologies and business models in companies, within the framework of the INNOGROW project, on the 15th of November 2017, at the premises of BSC, Business Support Center, Ltd, Kranj, in Kranj.

Project managers Lidija Zeme and Gregor Erznožnik introduced the main objectives and activities of the project INNOGROW and initiated the discussion of what measures could be recommended to upgrade the national Industrial policy, specifically, measures to introduce new production technologies and business models that lead to innovative products and services. One of the important results of this project is the transnational benchmarking on the technologies and innovation, business models used by rural SMEs and the transnational exchange of good practices. Part of the benefit of knowledge exchange is also the possibility to identify ideas for new projects including promotional projects.

Promotion is lots of times insufficiently addressed, however it is one of the most important aspects in adoption or implementation of innovative technologies, business models and changing consumer habits. Raising consumers’ awareness about the positive effects of high quality products on their quality of life is a key driver of sustaining the competitiveness of small production food economy. The well implemented promotional projects showed that even in a highly competitive market for a certain products it is possible for a small production economy to succeed even within a higher price range. The representative of the Agency for agricultural markets and rural development represented several success stories of such promotion, co-funded by European Regional Development Fund. One of them is successful marketing of Slovenian wine in United States where the demand for Slovenian wine is growing. The other one is boosting the sales of Slovenian pork products in Serbia, which is a great achievement if one imagines that selling pork to Serbia can be compared to selling pigeons to Venice.

Study visit led the regional stakeholder group to a slaughterhouse, literarily. Actually to an office of the slaughterhouse plant of the Agricultural and Forestry Cooperative zoo in Škofja Loka in Gorenjska region, where the implemented modern technological solutions for meat processing and there effects on business were introduced.