We continue to dynamically support our investment plans"

NGP1The complete destruction of his factory was not enough to stop the course of Mr. Nikos Papadakis, Consultant Manager of the "NGP PACK" and "INFIA" companies, who appears ready to once again confront the challenges of the international market.

FN: Mr. Papadakis, I would like us to begin with your company's construction plan. It was only about a year ago when you inaugurated the new supply center for the products of "NGP PACK" and "INFIA HELLAS" in the Isthmus of Corinth. However, the facility was completely destroyed in a fire and you were forced to reconstruct it from the beginning. What is your current status?

P.N.: Unfortunately, the building was indeed entirely destroyed. Of course, our activities have not ceased and we have already resumed our work for the construction of a new privately owned facility in the Isthmus. Our aim is to build a modern center of cardboard manufacturing, equipped with cutting-edge technology storage spaces. We believe that the project will have been completed by next summer and will be ready to offer its services to our clients before the beginning of the new season. This new facility will join our other two distribution centers in lerapetra, in Crete and Rizari, in Edessa, and strengthen our collaborations in Lakonia and Kavala, offering our clients a complete service system.

FN: Do you plan to expand the variety of your company's products in the near future?

P.N.: Our efforts to expand the variety of the company's products are constant and that is why we keep coming up with new ways of offering our services, in accordance to the demands of the market. To that end, a 5 million euros investment program for the production of single-use plastic packages for fruit is already under way. Basically, we are talking about ten different types of cases made of bio-degradable materials, manufactured by state-of-the-art machinery. Our investment plans also include the offer of logistics services to producers of packaging materials and the creation of a research department, to ensure the quality of the new products.

FN: Mr. Papadakis, it would be safe to say that, so far, all of your enterprising initiatives are based on your conviction that the sector of fresh fruits and vegetables still has a lot of room to grow. Is this what you are standing by?

P.N.: The fresh fruits and vegetable sector has entered a highly competitive environment. There will always be room for it to grow. However, what is most prominent right now is for us, as a country, to maintain our position in the export business field, by offering our clients certified, quality products. This is the only weapon we have against the other countries' competition.

However, the element that will mark our sector for the next two years will be the upgrade of the internal market. The application of the E.U.'s instructions regarding packaging and standardization will further boost the development of the internal market, while our adaptation to the European standards will help Greek products increase their share in the Greek market and, at the same time, facilitate our exports.

Nonetheless, we should not forget that, in order to achieve all this, we must ensure a quality upgrade throughout all the stages of our business, from the field to the retailer's.

FN: Your company has been one of the enterprises that substantially support initiatives undertaken by people of the sector, like, for example, the GREEK FRUIT CENTER group that participated in the FRUIT LOGISTICA 2005 international exhibition. Do you think such efforts hold any value?

P.N.: Of course we believe in the importance of such efforts and that is why we keep encouraging them. Our goal is to promote Greek products to the international markets, to strengthen our credibility and to secure our collaborations with foreign markets. Only through proper marketing will we be able to insure that the Greek products hit the markets as certified, quality products. Consequently, any initiative undertaken to that end, like the ones organized by "Froutonea", will be energetically supported.