Light and food industries

Light and food industries relate to the social complex of consumer goods production. Light industry today is a multi-branch sector comprising 25 sub-sectors. They embrace over 3,300 enterprises of different forms of ownership and subordination. Until recently it had been very well developed in Ukraine and almost completely satisfied the needs of population in consumer goods. The production of main types of light industry goods per capita was at the level of the leading countries of the world.

Light industry includes textile, knitting, clothing, leather, footwear, and other sub-industries. The key sector of the industry is textile production including cotton, wool and linen sub-units. Cotton industry uses imported raw materials. The largest operations are located in Kherson, Donetsk, Ternopil, Kyiv, Kharkiv, Lviv, Poltava, Chenivtsi, etc. The highest concentration of large wool operations using both domestic and imported raw materials is in Chernihiv, Donetsk, Kryvy Rih, Odesa, Luhansk and Sumy.

Knitting industry manufacturing clothes, underwear and other products is based in Kyiv, Kharkiv, Lviv, Odesa, Luhansk and Zhytomyr. Clothing industry is developed in many areas of Ukraine. Leather and shoe-making industry operates primarily in large cities. Fur industry is rather developed.

Currently the sector is going through substantial structural transformation: small enterprise has grown considerably, and most companies have changed their ownership pattern.

Food industry is traditionally the major supplier of basic foods, such as sugar, salt, oil, alcohol, confectionery, etc. Food industry is the leader of the agro-industrial complex. It will remain strategically important in future, determining the well-being of the people. The sector has considerable production, research and labor potential. At present, its production capacities are not fully utilized. They operate at 42% of capacity in confectionary, 30% in dairy canning and 19% in soft drink production. Thus, reserves of the sector are vast.

Among the major sub-sectors of the food industry are meat and dairy processing, sugar refining, flour milling and cereals production, oil extraction and starch and molasses production.

Food industry economic potential largely depends on the development of agriculture, which is the main element of the agro-industrial sector and the supplier of raw materials to all the sub-sectors of the food industry. Meat processing facilities are concentrated in Kharkiv, Poltava, Odesa, Kyiv, Vinnytsia, and Dnipropetrovsk. The largest dairy processors are based in Kyiv, Dnipropetrovsk, Kharkiv, Odesa, and Lviv. The sugar industry, which is another key element of the food industry, comprises more than 190 sugar refineries located in sugar beet growing areas (Vinnytsia, Cherkasy, Khmelnytsky, Kyiv and Termopil Oblasts). Flour and cereals industry offers its products to the market.

The most significant centers of the food processing sector are Kyiv, Kharkiv, Odesa, Mykolaiv, Zaporizhzhya, and Lviv. Canning industry based on fruit and vegetable supplies is strong in Odesa, Simferopol, Kherson, Izmail, Cherkasy, Nizhyn, etc. Vegetable oil extraction facilities primarily process sunflowers. The largest centers are Dnipropetrovsk, Mariupol, Zaporizhzhya, Poltava, Kirovohrad and Vinnytsia. Prospects for the food industry development include extention of domestic raw material supplies, introduciton of state-of-the-art technologies, and advanced marketing and management methods.