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A specialized cooling system for storing potatoes

The most significant share of potato production in the continental part of Croatia is located in the area of Međimurje (Belica) and Lika. More than a third of potatoes in Croatia are produced in the Belica region.

After the European Food Commission abolished the use of chlorpropham as anti-sprouting agent due to the nutritional risk for consumers, Croatian potato producers had a bitter pill to swallow. Chlorpropham, known under the factory name Tuberite, is a product based on chlorpropham, for which there is no registered alternative in Croatia. The deadline for the complete cessation of the use of Tuberite in potato storage was 8 October 2021, by which time all existing quantities were to be used up or destroyed. Without an alternative anti-sprouting agent, the domestic producers had to build new impermeable warehouses for potatoes where they would be stored without the use of chlorpropham. Given that investments in new and more technically advanced warehouses are extremely expensive, some small producers joined together with the aim of easier placement on the market (procurement of raw materials, sale of potatoes or semi-products, construction of modern warehouses, marketing and development). The Belpak company’s first specialized cold store for potatoes was opened in the Belica industrial zone, which enables adequate storage and year-round production of potatoes. The client – the company Belpak has been operating on the market for more than 15 years, and was created by the association of five manufacturers with the aim of easy placement on the market. In October 2021, Belpak’s potato warehouse with a capacity of 1,400 tonnes of potatoes was officially opened – according to the project, a specialized refrigerator for potatoes was built, with a total value of around HRK 11.5 million, with co-financing from the Rural Development Program in the amount of the approved support exceeding HRK 4.2 million. In the area of Belica, there will be 11 such cold storage facilities co-financed by European funds, and a total of 33 in Croatia. For the needs of the Belpak project, MB Frigo Grupa delivered a specialized cooling system for long-term storage of potatoes while maintaining high product quality. By storing potatoes with a cooling system, their quality is maintained without losing weight, and production will be raised to a higher ecological level. With the new quality standards, it is expected that domestic producers will be more competitive on the foreign market with a tendency to increase the export rate of potatoes. Ultimately, end consumers will be able to consume a healthier product of higher quality.

Installed equipment

Technical details

Air conditioning equipment: Tolsma-Grisnich cooling system Use: Cooling system for storing potatoes Capacity: according to project needs Client: Belpak Location: Belica, Međimurje / Croatia Installed on: September 2020