The Slovenia Times

Žito inaugurates €9 million investment in Maribor bakery

Officials inaugurate the renovated Žito bakery facility in Maribor. Photo: Gregor Mlakar/STA

The Ljubljana-based bread and pasta company Žito, owned since 2015 by the Croatian food group Podravka, has invested €9 million in renovating its bakery facility in Maribor which the company says is a step on the path of making it the largest baker in Slovenia.

The project completes a €16.2 million investment cycle that started in January 2022, Tomislav Bujanović, chairman of the Žito group, said at an event on 10 July inaugurating the renovated bakery.

The bakery has a new oven for pastries and a proofing chamber, tunnel freezers and a boiler room and machine room for the compressor station.

The investment enables Žito to introduce many innovations in baking of pastries and bread and the preparation of confectionery, and makes it possible to significantly increase the quantities of baked pastries per hour.

Martina Dalić, the chairwoman of Podravka and former Croatian economy minister, described Žito as the core of the bakery business in the Croatian food group.

"The investment ... is the last step in the overhaul of the Maribor bakery as we are strengthening our dominant position on the Slovenian market, while also becoming a relevant baker on the Croatian market and in other neighbouring countries," she said.

Žito exports more than half of its production. Its most important foreign markets are Croatia, Italy and Austria.

Economy Minister Matjaž Han said that he was pleased that important investments were being made in Slovenia's second-largest city, where 230 of around 1,000 employees of the Žito group work.

"Every investment by which the owners increase competitiveness is good both for the company and the employees, and for the state as well," he said, adding that the state will help Žito with possible additional investments, if necessary.

According to information on its website, Žito bakes 24,000 tonnes of bread and almost 7,000 tonnes of other bakery products annually in its eight bakeries, producing over 100 types of bread and bakery products. It says it has the largest market share in the bakery and milling sectors in Slovenia.


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