Third NUTRIS.fest took place in Novi Senkovac: Fava bean is not only a crop in the crop rotation

More than 200 family farms are currently involved in the NutriS process and the process of fava bean production. As we have heard, sustainable and regenerative agriculture is not the future, but the present.

For the third year in the row, NUTRIS.fest, an event that gathers numerous farmers and business associates of the NUTRIS company, was held in the premises of the factory for the production of the high-quality ingredients of the plant origin through the processing of the fava beans and potatoes in Novi Senkovac near Slatina.

The guests were greeted by CEO Zvonimir Sedlić and Ivan Balaško, General Manager for agribusiness, accenting innovative and sustainable mission of the company in the development of agriculture. Martina Gadnjaj, a specialist in agricultural production contracting, talked about current production, yields in the past season, plans and perspective. The most successful producers – Mirko Kesegić, Ivica Ponediljak and Stjepan Tobolčević – received acknowledgements and Super bob awards.

“From the very beginning, while NutriS was founded, till today we’ve walked a path crossed with many challenges. Fava bean was a culture that was not planted in this area, then we revolutionized the agricultural industry by building the first factory in Europe”, said Zvonimir Sedlić.

Starch was exported from Croatia for the first time in history

He pointed out that the company has had very interesting journey, followed by many success stories, including the fact that the company, for the first time in history, exported starch from Croatia.

He accented that the factory construction is worth 29 million Euros. It is one of the largest investments in the history of the Slatina region and the entire Virovitica Podravina County. Mr. Sedlić highlighted that this investment cycle will be completed by the end of this year.

“Innovations that we bring and will continue to bring are key for the development of the company. For us, fava bean is not just another culture in the crop rotation, but a symbol of the commitment to the people and the land, something that will upgrade the food industry“, commented CEO.

For the third year in the row, Ivica Ponediljak produces fava bean

He accented the importance of the partnership in company’s vision.

“It is very important to accent that we are on that journey together, as partner. We are happy that together we make a part of a good, long-term, and sustainable green future”, concluded CEO.

Ivan Balaško thanked farmers for their trust and congratulated them on the excellent results.

“Together with us you’ve made a step towards sustainable agriculture. I know that sometimes it wasn’t easy, but the yields of four, five and even six tons per hectare are very respectable and worthy of admiration”, Balaško said.

More than 200 family farms involved

More than 200 family farms are currently involved in the NutriS process and the process of the fava bean production. They achieved an average yield of 3.3 tons per hectare on 1.500 contracted hectares.

“Given that we are nutritional, innovative and sustainable company, we decided to introduce new methods in agriculture – regenerative agriculture.  Benefit that it brings you include reduced input costs, better soil quality, a premium price for your final products and additional income from carbon credits”, Balaško discovered.

Martina Gadnjaj said that the average yield is a very good result considering that production just started.

“Fava bean can succeed in all parts of Croatia. The best results are achieved in Vukovar Srijem and Osijek Baranja Counties. High yields and very good results indicate the high potential of growing this crop with proper agrotechnical measures“, Gadnjaj said.

She explained that excellent results were obtained by those farmers who used proper agrotechniques. However, she added, nothing is so ideal, so there were also below-average achievements. “The most common reasons for that were the absence of agrotechnique, but herbicides also caused a lot of problems as this is a crop that is sensitive to residues “, added the specialist in agricultural production contracting.

One of the most successful producers is 72-year-old Stjepan Tobolčević from Beravci near Velika Kopanica. He grows fava beans for two years at 10 hectares and achieves a yield of 6.012 kilograms per hectare.

“It is a serious production, that is how we treat all cultures. We use integral technique, we give it whatever the plant requires, regardless of what culture it is. Whatever we produce, we have very good results if nature allows it“, Tobolčević explained.

Production very similar to soy

He said that it was very challenging to achieve such a yield using fifty years of experience in agriculture.

“Fava bean is a new crop in these areas, but in production it is very similar to soybeans. If you apply your knowledge and respect all agrotechnical and secondary measures, success will arive“, concludes the laureate.

The award Super bob went to Ivica Ponediljak, whose family farm takes part in this production for three years. They decided to grow fava beans because it is a new culture and because a new factory was built nearby. They achieved a yield of 6.2 tons per hectare.

Stjepan Tobolčević achieved a yield of 6.012 kilograms per hectare “It was a challenge for us, to try something different. We didn’t take large area, just three hectares, to see how it goes. Last year was relatively bad for us and the others because of the draught, but this year was excellent“, say Ivica and Antonio Ponediljak.

They emphasize that the added value in the production of this plant is that, as a culture, it is excellent for crop rotation. “It is very good for the soil, it enriches it with nitrate, it loosens up the soil and it is the best against the soil degradation“, they explain.

After the award ceremony everyone could taste the delicacies made from the final products based on fava beans.