With funding from the European Union under its EU4Business initiative, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has helped Ukrainian company Nebesna Krinitsa, which produces and sells bottled drinking water, to implement a system for food products safety management, and to optimise its business processes.
Within a year of completing the project, the company’s turnover had grown by 30%, the number of customers was up by 22%, and the number of employees increased from 59 to 91. In addition, the employees became more competent, motivated and results-oriented.
Not only that, but the project – implemented under the EU4Business Advice for Small Businesses Programme – had helped the company become more competitive in the context of the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area with the European Union.
Nebesna Krinitsa has been active on the market since 2001 and was coming through a period of rapid growth when it turned to the EBRD for support. It had just launched a new production line with daily capacity of 100 m3, significantly expanded its distribution network and more than doubled the number of employees to 59.
Aiming to become the leader in production and delivery of bottled drinking water in Ukraine, Nebesna Krinitsa realised they needed to implement safety measures, improve product quality and the effectiveness of business processes, and so decided to upgrade their quality management system and integrate it with HACCP requirements.
Until this point, the company had expanded with its own resources, but now the management realised that, in order to upgrade the system to a qualitatively higher development level, it must be reviewed and improved by qualified specialists.
Through the EU4Business programme, the EBRD helped Nebesna Krinitsa to engage a consultant who developed and introduced a system of quality and food product safety management on the basis of HACCP standards, and integrated it with the current quality management system.
Quality management system
- developed the principal documents for the integrated system;
- improved the company's production efficiency through optimisation and formalisation of manufacturing processes and development of HACCP plans;
- taught the employees how to work with the integrated system;
- trained internal auditors to maintain the system’s viability.
A better quality management system enabled the company to increase sales, reduce costs and minimise risks, while implementation of HACCP requirements and the improved quality management system helped to improve the production efficiency, expand distribution market and also better manage the respective risks.
EBRD Advice for Small Businesses
The EBRD Advice for Small Businesses programme, funded in the Eastern Partnership countries by the EU under its EU4Business initiative, aims to promote good management in the SME sector by providing assistance to individual enterprises, helping them to grow their businesses. It supports SMEs to make structural changes and develop new business skills, helping them to thrive and compete in market economies. The programme also enables SMEs to access local consulting services on a cost-sharing basis by providing grants of up to €10,000.