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Bulgaria national sericulture development plan


National plan for sericulture revival and development in Bulgaria
Dr P. I. Tzenov* & Dr D.F. Grekov**
*BACSA President; e-mail: panomir@yahoo.com
**BACSA National coordinator for Bulgaria ; e-mail: grekov@au-plovdiv.bg
Chapter 1. Introduction 3
Chapter 2 . National plan for sericulture revival and development in Bulgaria 5
2.1. Rationale, backgrounds and justification of the strategic approach 5
2.2. Possible financial sources to realize the national plan 5
2.3. Strategy for the national implementing agencies 6
2.4. Strategic activities (what and how should be done) and budget estimation for the short period activities 6
1 .Brief content of the program 13
2 . Formation of a material base for the companies which will purchase and process the cocoons 14
3 . Problems that might occurr while planting mulberry orchards and while trading the final production 15
4 .Ecological and economic effectiveness of the project 15
Chapter 1. Introduction

The sericulture is one of ancient and economically effective sub - branches of agriculture in Bulgaria . The historical manuscripts manifest that the sericulture was practiced as early as during the first Bulgarian kingdom (7 th -11 th century A.D.), but it was especially strongly developed in the end of 19 th and first half of 20 th century, when in some years the fresh cocoon production reached up to around 3000 t. In 1896 the Sericulture Experiment Station in Vratza was established , which is one of the first research institutes in the field of agriculture in Bulgaria and one of the oldest sericultural and silk station in the world . During its more than one century old existence the station has worked actively in all the fields of sericultural science and production and contributed considerably in the increasing of managerial, technical and technological level of cocoon production in the country.


After the change of political and economical system in 1944 the cocoon production had remained in the producer's households, while the mulberry sapling and silkworm egg production, cocoon purchasing and processing was taken by the government.

A next favorable period of sericulture development in Bulgaria are the years after the Second World War – 1945 - 1955 , in 1953 the cocoon production reached 3019 t, what is still considered as a record in the history of Bulgarian sericulture. This favorable period with some fluctuations continued until the beginning of 1990s. Considering the high social importance of sericulture as a branch, providing job opportunities and income resources to thousands of rural households, during the period 1950-1990 the sericulture farmers in Bulgaria used to receive free of charge from the government mulberry saplings, young silkworm larvae, disinfectants and perforated paper for bed cleaning. The bigger portion of the costs for cocoon purchasing were paid by the government as a subsidy, resulting in comparatively low and stable price of the raw silk and silk commodities, allowing considerable selling at the local as well as international market. During the period 1975-1990 with an average annual production of 1200-2000 t fresh cocoons Bulgaria occupied the first place in Europe and 7 th -8 th place in the world per capita.

However after 1990 unfortunately the cocoon production in Bulgaria has started to decline due mainly to the sharp drop of raw silk price at the international market as well as the changes of political and economical system during the transition period.

By the same time the sericulture is one of the few agricultural branches, capable to provide without big investments and for a comparatively short period of time incomes to the farmers, while the cocoon and raw silk processing – opening new working places. The joining of Bulgaria to European Union disposes new favorable opportunities for cocoon production increase through the subsidies, provided by European funds.

Bulgaria has a high potential for sericulture industry development in terms of favourable agro-climatic and socio-economica l conditions. However, sericuluture industry development in the country has been inactivated with rapid change of its political and economical system and a large portion of sericulture farmers has consequently given up cocoon production activities thus to loose their job opportunities and income resources .

Bulgaria has one of the extraordinary advantages for sericulture development, having more than 1.3 million existing mulberry trees (tree-form) scattered all over the country which could be sufficient natural resources for supply of mulberry leaf to feed several thousand boxes of silkworm eggs and to produce approximately 500 tons of fresh cocoons at the national level.

However, the country needs to gradually shift and promote its on-going traditional sericulture industry development pattern as a commercially-oriented sericulture industry development activities on the long term basis in order to establish its development as a n economically viable agro-industry.

An integrated national sericulture development plan has been formulated as a primary priority by the National Center of Agricultural Sciences, Sericulture Experiment Station (SES)-Vratza and Agrarian university - Plovdiv in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry and other relevant agencies in order to successfully implement the proposed national sericulture development plan based on short/medium/long term. In view of the present institutional capacities, it would be technically ideal to set the short/medium/long term with different period of 3/5/7 years for each term.

The proposed national sericulture development plan should be implemented based on such a short/medium/long term development strategy by strengthening the institutional capacities, renovating basic infrastructure, improving relevant technologies on various areas of sericulture.

It is also essential that the government authorities concerned should provide SES-Vratza with more financial and administrative support to follow up necessary activities for sericulture industry development at the both regional and national level.

In the meantime, the government's effort should be made to obtain available fund from the EU as well as some possible donors such as UNDP, JICA, CIDA, KOICA , GTZ etc. and to generate new projects for follow up activities to support sericulture industry development at the both regional and national level.

I nternal market development should be followed by potential external market development since external market demand are mainly high quality of raw silk/silk yarn/silk allied products. After relevant technologies on silk processing being updated during potential local market development, external market could be explored with upgraded quality products. However, SES-Vratza's and the “Bulgarian silk” J.S.C. on-going development activities, particularly on cocoon/silk processing should be continuously strengthened to solve se r iculture farmers' market problems on the local consumption of cocoons.

Successful establishment and operation of a cooperative young silkworm rearing system/demonstration farms should be completed within a period of three years sin c e they are considered as the essential components to promote sericulture industry as an economically viable agro-industry and to benefit sericulture farmers with substantial income resources.

In-service training/extension programme should be planned and implemented by SES-Vratza and Agrarian university – Plovdiv to train extension workers and selected farmers through their participation in operation of demonstration farms' activities, instead of training them only in lecture rooms. The already published by the scientists of SES-Vratza and Agrarian university – Plovdiv t raining materials and manual s could be used as a training material during in-service training course s .

Multiplication of essential quality materials such as mulberry saplings and silkworm eggs is also one of the very important components to maximize their inputs and outputs of relevant activities for cocoon/raw silk production. Therefore, SES-Vratza's and Agrarian university – Plovdiv's effort should be geared toward strengthening of their R & D activities on the above-mentioned components.

In order to increase a productivity of mulberry leaf per mulberry tree, cultivation technology should be improved to increase the present average annual yield of 10-15 kg per tree to 20 kg, so that 25 mulberry tree s could feed silkworm larvae equivalent to one box of silkworm eggs.

Two to three typical models of infrastructures for silkworm (young/advanced) rearing houses and others should be also designed to renovate existing silkworm rearing rooms at the farmers' level and consequently to increase a productivity of cocoon per box of silkworm eggs up to 30-35kg fresh cocoons per box

Considering the present average level of farmers' low income earned from cocoon production, the proposed target of their average annual income from one hectare of mulberry plantation should be increased to US$ 7 000- 80 00, which could be considered to be a reasonable target of their income for sustainable development in the future.

However, traditional sericulture farmers' income should be increased to approximately US$ 700 - 800/household as a target for their income by using existing mulberry trees (75-80 trees) located around their houses.

Chapter 2 . National plan for sericulture revival and development in Bulgaria

2.1. Rationale, backgrounds and justification of the strategic approach


  • To reach in 2010 in Bulgaria an annual production of about 500 t of fresh cocoons, 60 t raw silk, quality 2A – 4 A, 10 t thick denier raw silk and 30 000 boutique silk handcrafts.
  • To decrease the unemployment and migration of the local population by opening 8000 new working places and providing additional annual incomes to the sericulture farmers in amount of 3 500 000 EUR after the joining of Bulgaria to the European Union.
  • To stabilize the rural economics and communities and improve the conditions for work and life.
  • Improvement of the ecological environment by development of an ecologically clean and nearly wastes-free industry such as sericulture.
  • Providing currency incomes for the country and increase the gross national income.
  • Creation of technical basis and human resources for further increase of fresh cocoon production to 2500 t and high grade raw silk production to 350 t after 2010 in Bulgaria.


  • In 20 10 -201 5 year the production of fresh cocoons to reach 2500 tones and 3million meters of silk fabrics. To attain this aim by the year of 201 5 , 8000 additionally families with over 20000 members and other 5000 ex-workers in the silk factories to be engaged in the newly created ones.

2.2. Possible financial sources to realize the national plan

  • Foreign donors like EU, KOICA, JAICA, UNDP, FAO etc.
  • Loan budget line for establishment of mulberry plantations, open by the State fund “Agriculture”, under the Ministry of agriculture and Forestry (MOAF).
  • Loans from the National Fund for Environment Protection, under the Ministry of Environment and Waters.
  • Subsidy from the “National programme for rural areas development”, measure “Development and diversification of the economical activities”.
  • Subsidy from the state fund “Agriculture” for increase the fresh cocoon purchasing price.
  • Governmental subsidies for R&D through the MOAF.
  • Bank loans.
  • Foreign and/ or Bulgarian private investors.

2.3. Strategy for the national implementing agencies

  • Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MOAF) in implementation for strategy execution arrangements with the National Center of Agricultural Sciences, SES – Vratza, Sericulture and Apiculture sub-division in MOAF, the Local Extension Service Offices in all the sericultural regions.
  • Ministry of Economics and Energetics
  • The Agrarian University in Plovdiv , the Thracian University in Stara Zagora and the Forestry University in Sofia
  • The provincial administration
  • The mayors
  • The Bulgarian Sericulture Association.
  • Private investors.

2.4. Strategic activities (what and how should be done) and budget estimation for the short period activities.

1. Creation of a country network for silkworm larvae distribution, cocoon purchasing, drying, assorting and storage, silk reeling and processing.

For the purpose, the “Bulgarian silk” J.S.C., Sofia has been created. The company will operate in all the country regions. In addition the companies “Svila” – Haskovo and “ Danube silk” – Ruse will also be involved in the silk industry development activities. These companies will take not only the cocoon purchasing and processing, but they also will organize the centralized egg incubation/young silkworm larval rearing, organize a network of cocoon purchasing centers in the main production regions during the silkworm rearing seasons. Each company will be equipped with incubatories, young silkworms rearing houses, cocoon storage houses, cocoon drying machines, deflossing machines, and the relevant equipment, such as trays, cages etc.

These companies will deal also with the silk reeling. Most of the high quality raw silk produced will be exported to some EU member countries (Italy, France, Greece), Japan and Korea and the rest will be processed to silk fabrics or sold at the local market.

2.Gradual renovation of mulberry plantations

It is necessary to c hange gradually the type and the varieties of mulberry plantations from high stem single trees of wild variety to low stem, high density, garden type, easy for harvest, and labour saving.

In order to improve gradually (for a period of 10 years) the varieties and the proportion between high stem single trees : low-cut plantations it is necessary to have an annual production of about 130000 mulberry saplings of highly productive varieties, such as Kinriu, Kokuso 20, Kokuso 21, Kokuso 27, Vratza 1, Tbilisuri, and Vratza 18. This production can be realized, following the technology of hardwood cutting method of mulberry propagation. Since the SES-Vratza do not have a so big production capacity, the Agrarian university of Plovdiv and some private producers should also be engaged.

The purpose for establishment of about 2000 comparatively bigger sericulture farms, each one having 0.5 ha mulberry plantation during the period 2007-2010 will require an additional production of 350 000 saplings in 2007 and total 3 million saplings in 2008 and 2009 .This production can be realized only if the bud grafting method of propagation will be widely used.

For this target, the mulberry sapling production should be very much increased, by entering of some private producers and/or associations into this business in order to reach a capacity of about 1.5 million saplings/year.

The newly established mulberry plantations should be low-stem (0.5-0.7m), with 0.8-1.5m inter-tree and not less than 1.5 m inter-row distance. For mechanized soil processing the inter-row distance should be not less than 3 m. In the plantations, having an inter-row distance 1.5-2 m, the soil in the inter-rows will not be processed, because of the overshadowing and mulching, thus saving costs.

If the country could reach the above mentioned mulberry saplings capacities of production, it would allow to plant about 1000 ha low-stem plantations during the period 2007-2009.

One big resource for mulberry leaf yield nearly double increase is the grafting of old mulberry trees , which is practiced in order to improve the yield quantity and quality of old wild or hybrid mulberry trees.

3.Improvement of the silkworm rearing facilities and technology

Now the farmers have enough buildings, which after some reconstruction could be successfully used as silkworm rearing houses. By the technical help of R&D units most of the farmers could make by themselves the rearing equipment, such as rearing trays, straw bottle brush mountages etc..

Some other additional measures would be:

  • Promotion of the autumn silkworm rearing aiming at achieve a balance of cocoon production 60 % from the spring crop and 40 % from the autumn crop. A system for the 2 nd crop during autumn season should be established and operated to supply young silkworm larvae in time. In the meantime, mulberry cultivation methods should be accordingly developed in order to supply suitable quality mulberry leaves for both young and advanced larvae.
  • For field adaptability test of imported silkworm varieties for 2 nd crop in autumn season, it may be worthwhile to importing a few more different hybrid silkworm varieties and to try them for 2 nd crop compared with local varieties
  • More sufficient financial and technical supports should be also provided in order to expand more number of demo-farms to the main sericultural areas and to increase productivity of cocoon yields per box of silkworm eggs at the national level.
  • Effort should be made to provide sericulture farmers with better mounting frames to improve reelability of cocoon . For the purpose an annual production of 200 000 cardboard frame mountages and 25 000 sets of perforated paper for bed cleaning shall be realized.

To adopt labour saving technology for 4 th and 5 th instar silkworm rearing at the field level in order to decrease the labour expenses from 5-6 h/kg fresh cocoons to about 3 h. .

4.Establishment of an effective extension service system for sericulture

This system will include the Sericultural Experiment Stations in Vratza and Harmanli, the three National state universities, having sericulture sub-divisions in Plovdiv, Stara Zagora and Sofia, the National service for advices in agriculture, under MOAF with its branches in the country as well as extension workers, appointed at the private cocoon/silk processing companies. For that purpose about 15 state extension workers must be appointed at the National service for advices in agriculture and another 30 extension workers should be hired at the private companies.

The other measures will be:

  • During the period 2007-2009 the stations and universities to conduct 6 training courses in order to train the extension service workers (45 persons) and 300-400 farmers in the modern techniques of mulberry and silkworm rearing, cocoon production and processing and the management of sericultural farm.
  • During the same period to create 200 model demofarms, each one for rearing of 5 boxes silkworm eggs annually (3 boxes in the spring and 2 boxes in the summer-autumn season) and production of 150-180 kg of fresh cocoons each. Every farm to be supplied in free of charge with 600 cardboard frame mountages and 700 mulberry saplings of highly productive varieties.
  • In 2007 and 2008 to open two model centralized young silkworm rearing centers, each one having a capacity of 500 boxes/stage.

5. Establishment of comparatively bigger sericultural farms

The main purpose of these farms is to provide stable supply with high quality cocoons at lower production costs.

In 1997-98 the Bulgarian Sericulture Association, with the active participation of the researchers from the stations and universities worked out a project, aiming to turn the sericulture as a basic livelihood for lend less, small land holders and poor rural families through establishment of bigger family sericultural farms. This project could also give the opportunity of some private companies to organize bigger silkworm rearings, hiring workers.

The candidates to participate at this project should have at least 0.5 ha own land, as well as a building, having capacity for 7-8 boxes of silkworm eggs/stage.

The Sericulture association has made many efforts to provide funding for this project during the recent years, however still the project is at its donors searching phase.

By the same time, funding for establishment of such kind of bigger cocoon production farms is provided by the SAPARD program, under MOAF.

For establishment of a sericultural farm, having 0.5 ha mulberry plantation and 75 m 2 rearing house, the following investments are necessary:
Mulberry saplings: 1 700 EUR
Mulberry planting and cultivation up to the 4 th year: 800 EUR
Reconstruction of the building, supply with rearing equipment: 4 000 EUR
  TOTAL: 6500 EUR

The farm will grow 15 boxes of silkworm eggs annually, in 3 stages, namely spring (May/June, 8 boxes), summer (July/August, 3 boxes) and autumn (September/October, 4 boxes), producing 450 kg fresh cocoons/year.

7.Promotion creation of farmer's groups, having a close circle of production from the cocoons to the ready silk handcrafts garments.

These farmer's groups could be created through a special project, financed by the European commission, some other foreign donors, Bulgarian government or some private investors. Other way is the farmers by themselves to create the group, as a voluntary association, where each member takes part with his/her own capital.

One farmer's group will be gathered from one or a cluster of villages. The target is the farmer's group to produce silk handcrafts, using inferior quality cocoon, cottage type industry and more labor. By this way all the cocoons produced at country level will be utilized, the good quality ones for reeling high grade raw silk by the fully automatic machines and the inferior cocoons-for silk handcrafts production. The farmer's group should have the necessary buildings, and to be equipped with cocoon drying machines, equipment for cocoon preservation and assorting, cocoon deflossing machines, cottage type machines for silk reeling, winding, doubling, twisting, equipment for silk yarn degumming and dyeing, machines for spooling, warping, coning, handlooms and/or knitting machines, sawing machines.


1. Creation of a country network for silkworm larvae distribution, cocoon purchasing, drying, assorting and storage, silk reeling and processing.

  • Silkworm egg incubatories: 4 x 15 000 EUR =60 000 EUR
  • Centralized young silkworms rearing houses: 4 x 30 000 EUR = 120 000 EUR
  • Cocoon deflossing machines: 18 x 2000 EUR = 36 000 EUR
  • Cocoon drying machines: 200 000 EUR
  • Equipment for cocoon storage and assorting: 20 000 EUR
  • Automatic cocoon cooking machines: 4 x 16 500 EUR = 66 000 EUR
  • Fully automatic silk reeling machines (400 ends): 4 x 155 000 EUR = 620 000 EUR
  • Boilers for industrial steam: 4 x 10 000 EUR = 40 000 EUR
  • Equipment for raw silk bundling, packing and storage: 15 000 EUR
  • Erection of the silk reeling machines: 15 000 EUR
  • Rent for the buildings: 50 000 EUR
  • Miscellaneous: 20 000 EUR

TOTAL: 1 262 000 EUR

2. Renovation of mulberry plantations.

  • 520 000 saplings x 1 EUR = 520 000 EUR
  • planting and cultivation up to the 4 th year: 250 000 EUR

TOTAL: 770 000 EUR

3.Improvement of the silkworm rearing facilities and technology.

  • Cardboard frame mountages: 800 000 pieces x 2.5 EUR = 2 000 000 EUR
  • Perforated paper for bed cleaning: 80 000 sets x 3 EUR = 240 000 EUR

TOTAL: 2 240 000 EUR

4.Establishment of an effective extension service system for sericulture

  • 45 extension service workers x 250 EUR x 36 months = 405 000 EUR
  • Expenses for the extension service (travel, stationer, communication etc.): 85 000 EUR
  • Training courses: 6 courses x 60 participants x 60 EUR = 21 600 EUR
  • Cardboard frame mountages for the demofarms: 200 farms x 600 mountages x 2.5 EUR = 300 000 EUR
  • Perforated paper for the demofarms: 200 farms x 6 sets x 2 years x 3 EUR = 7200 EUR
  • Mulberry saplings for the demofarms: 200 farms x 700 saplings x 1 EUR = 140 000 EUR
  • Support to the demofarms for innovation of the rearing house and equipment: 200 farms x 1300 EUR = 260 000 EUR
  • Model centralized silkworm rearing houses: 2 x 80 000 EUR = 160 000 EUR
  • Establishment of silk testing laboratory: 140 000 EUR
  • Foreign consultancy help: 10 p/m x 6500 EUR = 65 000 EUR
  • National consultants: 10 p/m x 1000 EUR = 10 000 EUR
  • Overseas training: 10 persons x 6000 EUR = 60 000 EUR

TOTAL: 1 653 800 EUR

5. Establishment of comparatively bigger sericultural farms.

  • 2000 farms x 6500 EUR = 13 000 000 EUR

TOTAL: 13 000 000 EUR

6.Creation of farmer's groups, having a close circle of production from the cocoons to the ready silk handcrafts garments.

  • 5 farmer's groups x 60 000 EUR = 300 000 EUR

TOTAL: 300 000 EUR


GRAND TOTAL: 19 225 800 EUR
Source of funding
Budget in EUR
Creation of a country network for silkworm larvae distribution, cocoon purchasing, drying, assorting and storage, silk reeling and processing
Private investors
1 262 000
Renovation of mulberry plantations
MOAF, subsidy
770 000
Supply of sericulture farmers with perforated paper and cardboard frame mountages
MOAF, subsidy
2 240 000
Appointment of 15 extension service workers
MOAF, subsidy
135 000
Appointment of 30 extension service workers
Private business
270 000
Expenses for the extension service
MOAF, subsidy
28 000
Expenses for the extension service
Private business
57 000
Training courses; cardboard frame mountages and perforated paper, mulberry saplings for the demofarms; support to the demofarms for innovation of the rearing house and equipment; model centralized silkworm rearing houses; establishment of silk testing laboratory; foreign consultancy help; national consultants; overseas training
Regional project “ Improvement of Income-Generation Options Based on Revival of Sericultural Industries and Promotion of Small Silk Enterprise Development in Eastern Europe and Central Asia ” , financed by foreign donors and Bulgarian government
1 163 800
Establishment of bigger sericultural farms
National program for development of rural areas; project financed by foreign donors
13 000 000
Farmer's groups for production of silk handcrafts
Private investors; foreign donors; Bulgarian government
300 000
19 225 800
Creation of a country network for silkworm larvae distribution, cocoon purchasing, drying, assorting and storage, silk reeling and processing
Production of mulberry saplings (pieces)
25 000
350 000
1 500 000
1 500 000
3 375 000
Production of cardboard frame mountages (pieces)
20 000
700 000
700 000
700 000
2 120 000
Production of perforated paper (sets)
20 000
30 000
30 000
82 400
Appointment of extension service workers (number)
Training courses (number)
Innovation of rearing houses and equipment in the demo farms (number of farms)
Establishment of model centralized young silkworms rearing houses (number)
Establishment of a silk testing laboratory
Foreign consultancy (p/m)
National consultancy (p/m)
Overseas training (number of persons)
Establishment of sericulture farms, having 0.5 ha mulberry plantation
Farmer's groups for production of silk handcrafts (number)
Silkworm egg production (boxes)
11 000
20 000
20 000
53 500
Fresh cocoon production (t)
High grade raw silk production (t)
Low grade raw silk production (t)
Silk handcrafts (pieces)
Number of sericultural households
1 250
5 500
10 000
10 000
Number of new working places opened
Gross incomes of sericulture farmers
Net incomes of sericulture farmers
2 7882 50
Economical analyses on the sericultural production at the end of development period: at the levels of farmers, commercial enterprises dealing with cocoon and silk



1.Sericulture farmers

EXPENSES (the labor not included):

1. Mulberry cultivation : 12 500 EUR

2. Silkworm eggs : 2 0 000 boxes ? 8.00 EUR = 16 0 000 EUR

3. Silkworm egg incubation and centralized 1 st and 2 nd instars larval rearing : 20 000 boxes ? 8 EUR= 16 0 000 EUR

4. Formalin for disinfection : 38 500 l ? 0.50 EUR=19 250 EUR

5. Perforated paper for bed cleaning : 20 000 sets ? 3 EUR = 60 000 EUR

6. Heating of the rearing house , paper , mulberry leaf transportation : 2 0 000 boxes x 15 EUR = 3 00 000 EUR

TOTAL : 711 750 EUR

INCOMES FROM THE COCOON SELLING: 500 000 kg x 7 EUR = 3 500 000 EUR

The fresh cocoon purchasing price per kg is formed as 1 EUR, paid by the commercial company, plus 6 EUR, provided as EU subsidy.

Positive financial result (payment of the farmers labor) : 2  788 2 50 EUR

The labor expenses for production of 1 kg fresh cocoon are 3.5 h: 3.5 h ? 500 000 kg = 1 750 000 h : 8 h = 218 750 man days.

2 788 250 EUR : 218 750 man days = 12.75 EUR/ man day

2. Commercial companies , dealing with cocoon purchasing , processing and silk reeling

Productional costs:

  • Cocoon purchasing: 500 000 kg x 1 EUR = 500 000 EUR
  • Cocoon drying, preservation and assorting: 200 000 EUR
  • Silk reeling and production of raw silk 2А – 4 А grade : 600 000 EUR
  • Reeling the 2 nd and 3 rd grade cocoons and production of grade less raw silk: 70 000 EUR
  • Rent for the buildings : permanent – 5 000 м 2 х 1.50 EUR х 12 месеца = 90 000
  • Bank loan re - payment , together with the interests : 400 000 EUR ( 3 years gratis period, 5 years term for re-payment , 10 % annual interest)
  • Interests for short-term loans : 45 000 EUR
  • Miscellaneous : 15 000 EUR

TOTAL: 1 923 000



SELLING OF RAW SILK 2A-3A GRADE : 6 0 000 kg x 3 5 EUR = 2 100 000 EUR


TOTAL: 2 222 500 EUR

PROFIT: 299 500 EUR

3.Farmer's groups, producing silk handcrafts

Productional costs:

  • Buying 2 nd and 3 rd grade dried cocoons: 4 0 000 kg x 2. 5 EUR = 100 000 EUR
  • Reeling the cocoons and production of grade - less raw silk : 10 000 kg raw silk x 7 EUR = 70 000 EUR
  • Silk winding , doubling , twisting , degumming , dyeing , spooling , warping , coning : 10 000 kg x 17 EUR = 170 000 EUR
  • Silk fabrics weaving / knitting , ready garment production : 30 000 garment x 8 EUR = 240 000 EUR
  • Repayment a loan with the interest ( 3 years gratis period, 5 years term for re-payment , 10 % annual interest): 90 000 EUR

TOTAL : 670  000 EUR

INCOMES: 30 000 ready garment x 25 EUR = 750 000 EUR

2000 kg defective cocoons and silk wastes x 1.50 EUR = 3000 EUR

TOTAL: 753 000 EUR

PROFIT: 83 000 EUR



1. Brief content of the program

  • The purpose of the program is to reorganize the sericulture as a means of living of the single family. A chance is also given to legal persons that possess land and buildings to join in the realization of that program on the principle of small and medium enterprises.
  • The program is created on the bases of the latest world technologies for silkworm rearing and for planting and managing mulberry gardens. The new technologies are described in the Working Plan, which includes three directions: Firstly to create the single candidates for taking up the sericulture, who are ready to plant mulberry gardens, providing technology for the mulberry cultivation and harvesting, which will guarantee repeatedly silkworm rearing over the spring-summer-autumn seasons. This part of the Plan finishes with financial accounts for the necessary investments for the creation of the garden. Secondly, to reconstruct and fit up buildings, necessary to rear silkworms 3-4 times in the period May – September. This part of the Plan consists of architectural plan for the reconstruction of the building, the necessary materials and the costs of the reconstruction, as well as determination of the equipment which will ensure the many times rearing of silkworms in this building. Also the technology for the daily cares about the silkworms is included. The project finishes with ecological and economical effectiveness for the silkworm breeder and for the society. The third part of that Plan is connected with obligations of the silkworm rearer to the Institution which has financed the construction of this base.
  • The Working Plan of the silkworm rearer is worked out by a specialized designers` bureau.
  • The creation of the necessary material base for the development of the sericulture as a main source of livelihood is accompanied with considerable financial means. Analyzing the financial part of the already created Working plan, it is clear that for the creation of 0.1 ha mulberry garden 450-500 Euros are needed. For the reconstruction and fitting up of l square meter rearing house, 25-30 Euros are needed. Totally, for the creation of 0.5 ha mulberry garden and for the reconstruction and fitting up of 80 square meters building, in which 15 boxes of silkworm eggs could be reared annually, the costs are 5000-5500 Euros. However the population, for whom this program is directed, does not possess such investments. So it is looking for a possibility the Plan to be financed with free or at low rate of interest and long term credits. That will give chance to a single company, responsible for a certain region, to finance the construction of material base for the silkworm rearing at already defined conditions. Some of them are: the candidate to possess at least 0.5 ha land and own building, which to be at least 80 square meters. A notary certified obligation that the constructed facilities will be used at least 15 years for silkworm rearing as well as the quality and quantity of the cocoons which the sericulture farmer has to provide to the company which has financed him. In 0.1 ha mulberry plantation is foreseen to be planted from 250 to 400 trees. The plantation will be low-cut and with mulberry varieties, having very high leaf productivity. When developing the particular project it is expected to achieve partial mechanization of the silkworm rearing, guaranteeing high output and better quality of the cocoons. For example, a combined machine for the Association is considered, which automatically cuts the accumulated leaves, removes the leaves from the branches, and also removes the cocoon floss. There will be provided automatic control of the optimal temperature and air humidity in the silkworm rearing house. The purpose is to assure a relatively higher quality of the cocoons, which will allow the production of raw silk with estimated grade of 3A - 4A because this grade of raw silk has high demand at the world market at the moment.

2. Formation of a material base for the companies which will purchase and process the cocoons

It's estimated that the optimal capacity of the companies of cocoon purchasing and processing has to be about 250-280 tones of fresh cocoons/year. For this purpose the company has to create the following conditions:

  • For the purchasing of fresh cocoons, their storage and assorting each company has to provide and to install special drying machines and the other necessary facilities.
  • The company has to provide also the necessary silk reeling machines. The expenses for their supplying and installing are about 350-400000 Euros. The company needs to be ready to process the raw silk produced. This will be possible only if the company gives the raw silk to another company which is capable of weaving the raw silk or to buy an equipment for 1200000 Euros.
  • The company could sell the raw silk produced or to manufacture it into silk fabrics, for which the company would spend another 350-400000 Euros. For the creation of the base for silkworm rearing at farmer's level, the company would spend 2800000 Euros for the period of 200 7 -20 10 and for the creation of own base for the manufacturing of the bought cocoons purchased – 2,000,000 Euros till 20 12 year.

3. Problems that might occurr while planting mulberry orchards and while trading the final production.

  • During the period 200 9 -20 14 more than 2000 – 3500 ha of mulberry plantations are due to be established which means that about 8500000 of mulberry trees are to be planted. That will guarantee a rearing of about 80000 boxes of silkworm eggs annually. For solving such a event there is an appropriate organization needed. In the beginning of 200 7 the Bulgarian Sericulture Association organized a seminar at the Sericulture Experiment Station in Vratza, where more than 80 mulberry sapling producers were trained.
  • A participation at the world silk market is possible only if there is a high quality of the silk produced and competitive prices. The program performed foresees an incorporation of a joint stock company where the shares will be held by well known Bulgarian or foreign silk producing companies.
  • The project is focused very tightly on a training of silkworm rearers. Several silkworm rearing farms will de established therefore well trained managers will be needed. The training program shall be financed by the Bulgarian government.
  • The project foresees adoption of the European standards for evaluating the silk cocoons and the raw silk up to 200 8 and supply of raw silk/silk fabrics to the European union. Therefore the European Union shall probably be interested to co-finance the program.

4 .Ecological and economic effectiveness of the project

  • Sericulture development project is socially oriented. Its main objective is to provide a permanent occupation and better living standard. It is directed mainly to jobless and poor families. This program offers the sericulture as an alternative occupation. One of the main targets of this program is to create material bases for families with low income, which do not have much land, without charging them with many expenses.
  • Project's effectiveness to a family dealing with silkworm rearing shall be as follows if it owns the minimum of the sources needed (0.5 ha of mulberry plantation and 80 m 2 of rearing house area). A family of 2 persons, capable to work, is able to grow a 0.5 hectare of mulberry garden and 15 silkworm egg boxes during the period from May to September. Currently EU gives 13 4 euros per one box of silkworm eggs, reared. That means that those family shall receive at about 2000 euros for 15 boxes that it is able to produce per annum. The annual gross income shall amount to 3600 euros.
  • The project is also orientated to companies that deal with sericulture.

Company' expenses per annum:
Repayment of the loan
450000 euros
Annual interest
50000 euros
Purchase of 250 tones of fresh cocoons
750000 euros
Drying up the cocoons
50000 euros
Silk reeling
270000 euros
Silk weaving - for 320000 m fabrics
750000 euros
Sewing 120000 sets of garment
350000 euros
Productive expenses
267000 euros
Factory expenses
250000 euros
Total expenses per annum
3187000 euros
Company' incomes per annum:
Selling 120000 sets of garment (30 euros per each)
3600000 euros
Selling of mulberry saplings
100000 euros
EU financing (per 3000 cocoon boxes)
400000 euros
Total income per annum
4100000 euros
Profit – 913000 euros
Taxes – 180000

Unforeseen expenses - 150000 euros

Net profit per annum – 583000 euros

-Ecological effectiveness. More than 4000 ha of mulberry tree orchards shall be planted. Some of them shall be located at damaged or polluted areas. Silkworm rearing do not pollute the atmosphere.

5. Finance schedule for 20 10 -20 15

For the year 20 10 – 12000000 euros

For the year 20 11 – 12000000 euros

For the year 20 12 – 20000000 euros

The Joint Stock company for sericulture business development has already been registered. The main porpoise of the company is to obtain low interest bank loans (about 5-5.5% of annual interest), 4 years as a free of interest period and in between 8-10 years for clearing off.

“Bulgarian silk” JSC is looking for foreign companies that are interested in becom ing of shareholders of it. The company could offer 51% of the shares. It is extremely important to get a n equipment that fits the European standards. For the period between 20 10 and 20 12 the company will need around 12 drying and 12 silk reeling machines. This equipment needs to be delivered to the companies which are shareholders at “Bulgarian silk” JSC






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