Local Product Center in Hajnówka
The meeting took place yesterday at the Hajnówka City Hall. It was attended by over a dozen producers of local beer, Marcinek cake, honey, herbs and tomatoes, as well as representatives of tourist organizations and the Marshal’s Office of the Podlaskie Voivodeship. They were organized in order to determine what form the center is to have and to what needs of producers and recipients it should be responded. It was hosted by Michał Basiński from Synergia, an expert in the field of creating brands of tourist places.
Our meeting is so that, with the help of an expert, we can start the task of establishing Local Product Center. Its aim is to make local products more recognizable.
The research carried out during the creation of the New Path of Development in Hajnówka showed that good-quality local products are the potential of the city, which, however, is not sufficiently used. Therefore, it is worth building the recognition of Hajnówka, among others based on these products. Hence, the creation of the Hajnówka Local Product Center has become one of the most important activities included in the “Hajnówka Renewal – Green Transformation” project.
When creating this project, we had many ideas for the center. However, which of them will be implemented depends on you - the producers. We would like to know your needs and expectations.
The meeting leader emphasized that the center is to be a tool for entrepreneurs.
Today we will talk about how this center is supposed to support you, so that the local product is what tourists perceive, and on the other hand, that the center influences sales, which will be conducive to economic development. We would like to collect your ideas on how the center should look like. Determine what you want it to deliver to you and what to deliver to your audience.
Producers were eager to share their observations. They also said what they were missing. Ineffective communication is a problem that ran through many of the statements. For example, they are informed too late or not at all about various types of events, such as fairs, in which they could participate. They also pointed out that there is little awareness among the city’s inhabitants as to what local products Hajnówka is known for. Another problem is the dispersion of places where you can buy them. There is also tourist information scattered around various institutions. There is also no institution that would comprehensively support local producers.
So what should the Hajnówka Local Product Center be like? Certainly: friendly, accessible, communicative, engaging, natural, inspiring and open. These features were indicated by Michał Basiński as key.
So what should the Hajnówka Local Product Center be like? Certainly: friendly, accessible, communicative, engaging, natural, inspiring and open.
Legendary tomatoes from the farm of Mr. Witalis Jakoniuk
In his opinion, the Hajnówka Local Product Center should be an offer for a tourist-explorer. That is, someone who is looking for interesting, non-obvious, authentic places, customs and tastes. It should constitute a system of cooperation, promotion and sharing of local products from the Białowieża Primeval Forest region, thanks to which tourists-explorers will learn the identity of the region and its inhabitants, as well as the culinary traditions by experiencing the diversity of products created on the basis of the unique tradition and nature of the Białowieża Primeval Forest area.
Don't think of a brand as a place, think of it as an idea. And the place has to fulfill this idea.
Therefore, the question arises whether the Hajnówka Local Product Center is to be a building, and if so, what functions should it fulfill? Maybe it should rather be an institution supporting entrepreneurs, or an advertising agency operating for all producers, which will relieve them, for example, in running company profiles on FB or create companies or advertising gadgets for them.
Producers’ needs often depend on the type of business they conduct. Some entrepreneurs indicated that they could use a room for organizing workshops, others suggested that there should be a place where all local products from Hajnówka could be bought. Yesterday’s meeting is just the beginning of work on the Local Product Center in Hajnówka. One thing is certain – the place is to connect and serve all producers.