Bosnia and Herzegovina, the next commercial destination of the Spanish meat industry

The eastern European country could become an interesting target for our industry due to its interesting market niches and its strong demand for meat products.

Bosnia and Herzegovina could be in the crosshairs of Europe’s meat industry as the next commercial destination. A report published by ICEX has detailed the keys that make this area of Eastern Europe an interesting country to export meat to from the rest of the continent, pointing out Spain as one of the countries that may see increased possibilities of being part of this market. It is a sector in which for the moment, Spain has an almost non-existent participation.

Despite having low production and hardly any automation in these fields, the meat processing sector in Bosnia and Herzegovina is one of the main pillars of consumption, and one of the most developed. However, it is still insufficient to meet the demand for the product. For this reason, imports from neighboring countries have been increasing, being an industry that is governed according to the community norm. This is not the case, however, in Spain, which is, at the moment, almost unknown to Bosnians when it comes to food imports. And this is where our opportunity arises.

According to the report, in the country there is a great tradition of production of lamb and veal, two market niches that could be nourished by Spanish exports, due to their quality and price. The report indicates the tendency of the Bosnian consumer to prioritize a cheap price over quality, something to take into account in the strategy of introduction in the market. Another aspect highlighted in the report is the market niches that could arise: the consumption of gourmet food has more and more place in the most touristy areas of the country, and there is also a trend for healthier food. In addition, there is also a strong market for Halal meat, taking into account the high rate of Muslim population, which could translate, not only in the export of meat produced by Halal rite, but in implementing the technology to automate the industry in the own territory.


How can Spain be part of the Bosnian meat market? What are the strengths and weaknesses? After the analysis of the report, of the little that Spain exports to Bosnia and Herzegovina, its market has already been understood by those familiar with our country as a product with a good relation between quality and price, and that would be the first advantage. Spain is well regarded, according to the report.

On the other hand, the new market pitches mentioned before could be exploited by Spanish producers, since we have a high-quality meat product and a strong gastronomic tradition to be able to compete favorably within the gourmet food sector. On the other hand, and complying with the Animal Welfare regulations, the needs of Halal product can be satisfied through export, or through the provision and equipment of the industry, these two markets being of interest to Spain.

Our main weakness is the “lack of knowledge about the market” and the production of Spain by the Bosnian country. Our food exports to Bosnia and Herzegovina are not the majority, and the lack of advertising and visualization of our market hinders our presence in this territory. Furthermore, we face strong competitors supplying Bosnia and Herzegovina with a number of products: not only neighboring countries, such as Croatia, Serbia or Slovenia, but also Italy, Germany and Hungary have a share in the Bosnian market.

Given these data, the opportunity to compete in the meat market of Bosnia and Herzegovina becomes more possible. Spain could take advantage of these demands to form an emerging market that expects an economic recovery in the coming years.