Case Study Two: Dairy Farm Rhodopa Milk
Dairy Farm Rhodopa Milk is situated in ecologically clean area, in the village of Smilyan, Rhodopi Mountain. This is a small-scale dairy farm established in 1993, which develops diversified on-farm activities, such as alternative forms of tourism and offers local traditional cuisine as well. In its future scope, it intends to enlarge the tourism activities to allow visitors to view the dairy production process and to take part in it. Rhodopa Milk is specialized in the production of traditional dairy products, produced with cow (Jarse breed), sheep, and fresh goat milk, and after a training of the technologists in Switzerland, it started to produce Swiss and Dutch types of cheese. It has a limited production capacity—1.2 tons raw milk production daily—as well as a very limited market share. The production of Rhodopa Milk is intended for the Bulgarian market, as the processed milk is about 2.5 tons per day. The entire amount is collected from the Rhodope region, within a radius of 50 km. Company's marketing and sales activities are insufficient, and it relies on dairy distributors from the biggest cities like Sofia, Plovdiv, and Varna, and on-farm sales as well. It produces traditional products as yogurt, cheese, butter, and yellow cheese.
One of its new and most unique products is the dairy pate “100 years old.” This specialty dairy product comes from the Rhodopi Mountain and has been developed for 25 years by the famous Bulgarian microbiologist professor Hristo Chomakov. It is being made from Bulgarian yogurt, Bulgarian feta cheese, crud (cottage cheese), onion, and red paprika. This healthy new product is entering the market thanks to the “Agro-Geno- Trans” project, which is part of the Programme for European territorial cooperation between Greece and Bulgaria, from where it also receives financial means to promote the product and affirm it as a brand. The tests of the pate quality and effects are overtaken by the team of academician Atanas Atanasov at the United Genome Center Sofia. After numerous experiments and research, it has been proved that “100 years old” can prevent large intestinal cancer, strengthen the immune system, provide antioxidant effects, and also lead to longer and healthier life.