Blace- On May 10th 2012, at the Lazar dairy farm in Donja Dragusa, a village near Blace, US Ambassador Mary Warlick officially launched a bio gas digester.
Ambassador Warlick stated that the Lazar Dairy investment in the biogas technology is important for the region and as Lazar Dairy continues to flourish, so will the company’s more than 2,000 suppliers. She also noted that the bio-digester is one of the most significant technology transfers in Serbia, in both the agricultural and renewable energy sectors. "This investment, which is one of the largest private sector investments in the entire region, is a milestone in waste management in Serbia and can demonstrate to other companies how investments in cleaner production technologies can also lead to greater profits."
US Ambassador Mary Warlick with the Lazar Dairy owner Milan Vidojevic- Lazar Dairy started operating in 1994 with two employees. Today, the company employs 180 people and has a production capacity of 80,000 liters a day. Over 2,100 households from the region supply the company.
Lazar Dairy has invested $2.6 million in the purchase and the installation of the U.S. bio-gas technology which will solve the company's issues relating to biodegradable waste from the farm and the dairy production line, while using the waste for generating energy for the production of biogas and electricity.
The installation of the bio-digester is not only one of the largest local investments in the South of Serbia; it also marks a significant technology transfer in agriculture and renewable energy. In addition to helping Lazar to turn waste into profit, the investment can serve as an example for the further development of the livestock and dairy sectors in Serbia.
This technology transfer was initiated through a United States Department for Agriculture (USDA) project aimed at promoting renewable energy resources in Serbian agriculture, while the USAID Agribusiness Project played an instrumental role in introducing this technology to the dairy and livestock sectors in Serbia.
On the occasion of visit to Blace, US Ambassador Warlick visited Hera company, located in the village of Donja Trnava near Prokuplje, owned by Mrs. Vesna Jevtovic. Hera produces the frozen pies and pastries, and sells its products through supermarket chains in Serbia and exports to EU and Switzerland. Hera is one of the USAID Agribusiness project beneficiaries