South Savo´s position Finland’s food production is undisputed. South Savo's agriculture and food industry stands for premium quality and local organic food production. There are ca. 2,800 establishments, nearly 5,000 jobs and yearly turnover of 930 m € in agrifood sector (year 2017).
Primary production has an important role in agrifood sector. About 5% of all farms and gardening businesses and nearly 4% of arable land are located South Savo. The main production lines are crop cultivation, milk production and cattle breeding. South Savo is also know of large volume of organic farming. Over 17% of cultivated area is in organic production. Commercial forestry has also a significant role in economics of South Savo.
Moreover, South Savo is well known for the lake Saimaa, which is the fourth largest lake in Europe. Therefore, inland fishery is strong: 23% of all inland fishery catches, and 37% of all vendace catch comes from South Savo.
Agrifood digitisation is included in regional policies and plans as across cutting theme. Development plan for South Savo rural areas 2014-2020 outlines e.g. the importance of understanding business models and use of information technology.
In sparsely populated area, such as South Savo, the telecommunication link and infrastructure are essential for rural development. The Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment as well as the South Savo Regional Council has invested in them resent years. Additionally, IT skills of entrepreneursand citizens are supported.
Creating innovative cooperation models in the whole food chain is important to increase the profitability and efficiency of the region’s agrifood sector. Thus, digital solutions are vital element of strategic choices, for example in food sector traceability of products and safety of food supply chain.