How to set up a fruit and vegetable processing plant?

Service Business

A future entrepreneur who wants to start his own business should first decide what his company will do, and then complete the activities related to setting up a business and meet all the specific requirements for the established company. Check what to look for when opening a fruit and vegetable processing plant!

Fruit and vegetable processing plant - general characteristics

The fruit and vegetable processing plant deals with the primary and in-depth processing of fruit and vegetables for the following:

  • fruit wines, droughts,

  • meads,

  • vegetable and vegetable and meat preserves,

  • fruit and vegetable marinades, compotes,

  • jams, preserves, marmalades and preserves,

  • juices,

  • fruit and vegetable drinks and nectars,

  • fruit and vegetable frozen meals.

The type of preserves produced depends primarily on the season. During the summer season, plants focus primarily on juices and drinks, while in winter on jams, purees, pickles, etc. Frozen and dried food can be produced regardless of the season.

In order to produce processed fruit and vegetables, the plant must meet a number of sanitary and hygienic requirements.

Prerequisites for running a fruit and vegetable processing plant

Activities involved in the production, storage, packaging and trading of agri-food products (including raw or processed fruit and vegetables) must be reported to the provincial inspector of commercial quality of agri-food products (WIJHARS) competent for the place of residence or seat of the declarant.

However, this does not apply to:

  • farmers and entrepreneurs producing wine from grapes obtained from grapevines located in the territory of the Republic of Poland;

  • economic activity in the field of retail trade in agri-food products.

The application must be made no later than on the day of commencement of business activity.

Processing of fruit and vegetables also requires the registration and approval of the plant within the meaning of the provisions on food safety and nutrition. The registration authority is the state poviat sanitary inspector (PIS). After approval or conditional approval, business can begin. The application for approval of the establishment must be submitted no later than 14 days before the commencement of operation.

If the plant only trades in fruit and vegetables, it must inform the provincial inspector of the commercial quality of agri-food products with jurisdiction over its place of residence or seat.

People who work in a fruit and vegetable processing plant must obtain a medical certificate for sanitary and epidemiological purposes specified by law, stating that there are no contraindications to perform work where there is a possibility of transmitting the infection to other people. The received decision and all related documents should be kept in the employee's personal files, preferably at the workplace, in the event of an inspection by official food control authorities. If establishments additionally purchase, store and sell mushrooms, they must employ mushroom classifiers or mushroom experts.

Determination of the PKD number for a fruit and vegetable processing plant

There are three classifications related to the fruit and vegetable processing activity:

10.31.Z - Processing and preserving of potatoes, includes:

  • processing and preserving potatoes:

  • manufacture of prepared frozen potatoes

  • - manufacture of powdered mashed potatoes

  • - manufacture of potato crisps (crisps)

  • production of potato flour and meal

  • industrial potato peeling.


10.32.Z - Production of fruit and vegetable juices includes:

  • - manufacture of fruit and vegetable juices

  • production of concentrates from fresh fruit and vegetables.

10.39.Z - Other processing and preserving of fruit and vegetables includes:

  • manufacture of food mainly consisting of fruit or vegetables, excluding prepared meals, frozen or canned

  • preserving fruit, nuts and vegetables by freezing, drying, pouring oil or vinegar, canning, etc.,

  • production of fruit and vegetable food products,

  • - manufacture of jams, marmalades and jellies

  • roasting nuts,

  • manufacture of food products from nuts

  • the production of perishable prepared meals made of fruit and vegetables such as salads or peeled or cut vegetables.

Forms of running a fruit and vegetable processing plant

A fruit and vegetable processing plant can be run in any form of economic activity, except for a partnership that can only be established by freelancers. A sole proprietorship and a civil law partnership must be registered in CEIDG. On the other hand, the following companies: general partnership, limited partnership, limited joint-stock partnership, limited liability and joint-stock company should be registered in the National Court Register.

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How to set up a fruit and vegetable processing plant?

In Poland, conducting business activity is allowed in the following forms:

  • unregistered activity,
  • sole proprietorship,

  • civil partnership,

  • commercial companies (partnerships and capital companies) - except for a partnership.

Undeclared activity

The rules related to unregistered activity are regulated in Art. 5 of the Act - Entrepreneurs' Law, pursuant to which an activity performed by a natural person is not considered to be an economic activity:

  • whose income due from this activity does not exceed 50% of the minimum wage in any month,
  • which has not performed any economic activity during the last 60 months.

A sole proprietorship

This activity can be carried out independently, thus you are the sole owner and representative of a fruit and vegetable processing plant. An entrepreneur who has chosen a sole proprietorship has the easiest way to keep accounting records and is not bound by many formalities. No initial capital is needed to set up a business.

However, the disadvantages include the fact that in this form of running a fruit and vegetable processing plant, private property is responsible for everything. The spouse may also be held responsible.


A civil partnership is established by at least two natural or legal persons - information about its establishment is reported by each partner separately on CEIDG. Civil law partnership is not subject to registration in the National Court Register. You do not need your own capital to establish it, partners are responsible for liabilities with joint or personal property.

Commercial companies

All commercial companies, that is:

  • general partnership,

  • limited partnership,

  • partnership Limited by shares,

  • private Limited company.,

  • joint-stock company,

require registration in the National Court Register kept by district courts competent for the registered office of the company being created.

The best form of taxation of a fruit and vegetable processing plant

When conducting fruit and vegetable processing activities, an entrepreneur can choose one of the following forms of taxation:

  • taxation on general principles,

  • flat taxation,

  • lump sum taxation on recorded revenues.

When running a fruit and vegetable processing plant, the taxpayer has no right to pay taxes according to the tax card.

Taxation on general terms

General rules are the basic form of taxation - it is assigned to the taxpayer if he chooses no other. This form of settlements allows you to pay tax in the amount of 18% after reducing it by the tax-free amount of PLN 556.02 and at the rate of 32% PLN 15,395.04 plus the excess over PLN 85,528 of the tax base. The tax amount may be deducted by the allowances and deductions provided for in the Act.

Taxation with flat tax

When settling with the flat tax, the entrepreneur settles at a fixed rate - 19% - regardless of the amount of income. The flat tax is paid to those taxpayers whose annual income exceeds PLN 100,000. zlotys. However, the use of this form of settlement excludes the possibility of reducing the tax amount by deductions and deductions. It is also not possible to settle accounts together with the spouse.

Lump sum on recorded revenues

Using a lump sum is mainly related to the inability to classify expenses as tax deductible costs. Only revenues from the conducted activity are taken into account in the settlement.

Each activity, provided that it is eligible for lump sum settlement, is taxed at a different rate. For a fruit and vegetable processing plant, in addition to the production of fruit wines, the flat rate is 5.5% - on revenues from manufacturing activities.

By choosing a lump sum on recorded revenues, the entrepreneur loses the possibility of settling accounts with the spouse, and he will not deduct the child allowance.

A fruit and vegetable processing plant - with or without VAT?

In the case of running a fruit and vegetable processing plant, an enterprise that does not achieve revenues higher than PLN 200 thousand PLN, may benefit from VAT exemption. In practice, however, such plants achieve much higher turnover, which is why they are most often taxed with VAT. In addition, most customers of the processing plant are companies - including VAT taxpayers.

Providing services to natural persons in a fruit and vegetable processing plant, with a turnover exceeding 20 thousand. PLN, it is worth considering the purchase of a cash register. When purchasing the first cash register, the taxpayer may take advantage of the tax relief for the purchase of a cash register.

Social security contributions for the fruit and vegetable processing plant

The entrepreneur must register for insurance at ZUS no later than 7 days after setting up the business. He does it on the ZUS ZUA printout, if the fruit and vegetable processing plant is his only title to insurance, or to ZUS ZZA, if he also works in another place.

Relief to start

Thanks to the start-up relief, a taxpayer starting a business has the option not to pay social security contributions (retirement pension, disability pension, accident, sickness) for 6 months from commencement of business activity. However, in order to be able to take advantage of the start-up relief, the entrepreneur must meet the following conditions:

  • be a natural person (i.e. a sole proprietor or a partner in civil partnerships)
  • starts business activity for the first time or resumes it after at least 60 months from the date of its last suspension or termination
  • does not perform activities for a former employer for whom they worked full-time in the current or previous calendar year and performed activities falling within the scope of their current activity
  • is not insured by KRUS

If a person starting a business meets the conditions and takes advantage of the start-up relief, they will only be required to submit to ZUS a health insurance application on the ZZA form within 7 days of starting the business.

Preferential social security contributions

An entrepreneur who starts a business or the period of 6 months of start-up relief has passed, may take advantage of preferential ZUS contributions, which cover a period of 24 full months. The amount of ZUS contributions depends on the average salary in Poland. The basis for the amount of contributions for people who pay social contributions on a preferential basis is 30% of the minimum wage in a given year.

Vegetable and fruit processing management

Vegetable and fruit processing companies are quite diverse in terms of seasonality, type of required means of transport, used warehouses or storage period.

In their activities, owners must focus primarily on the requirements of customers. So the most important thing is freshness, quality and the right size of fruit and vegetables. In order to meet demanding consumers, the entrepreneur must be proficient in logistics. Fast transport means freshness. On the other hand, appropriate actions are responsible for the quality of the product, from the moment when the buds or embryos of the vegetables appear, until the harvest and storage in warehouses. In the rush of matters, the owner of fruit and vegetable processing must also find time to conduct reliable accounting of his company and staff when hiring employees.

Company management systems, e.g., are helpful in this sense. The program has all the necessary functions for the proper accounting of the enterprise, such as:

  • issuing and sending all types of invoices,

  • direct submission of e-declarations and SAF-T reports thanks to integration with the Ministry of Finance and e-ZUS,

  • entry of the purchase of fixed assets and automatic depreciation.

Additionally, the system provides a CRM module. Each owner of a fruit and vegetable processing plant must take care of acquiring contacts with the recipients of their products or subcontractors. Thanks to the CRM module, it is possible to automatically download data about partners from the Central Statistical Office (which then facilitates issuing a cost invoice for products), managing relations and archiving documents.

Company account for a fruit and vegetable processing plant

The regulations do not clearly define whether the entrepreneur must set up a separate company account. An entrepreneur may use a private account to run a fruit and vegetable processing plant, but he must be its sole owner (it cannot be shared, for example, with a spouse).

What are the housing conditions for a fruit and vegetable processing plant?

In addition to typical processing and production processes, additional activities related to vegetables and fruit may take place on the premises of the plant, consisting in their storage, preparation for packaging or delivery to the recipient.

This trade may take place periodically (most often in summer), but if the fruit and vegetable processing plant is a year-round service, the required control and supervision over the commercial quality of the above-mentioned products will take place under the Act on the organization of fruit and vegetables, hops and tobacco markets. , the market of dehydrated fodder, and the markets for flax and hemp grown for fiber.

Additionally, the fruit and vegetable processing plant must meet certain sanitary standards. Particular requirements for rooms where foodstuffs are prepared, treated or processed are included in Chapter II of Regulation (EC) No 852/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 29 April 2004 on the hygiene of foodstuffs.

The fruit and vegetable processing plant and environmental protection

Even the smallest processing plants must be aware that the amount of water used and its source, sewage discharge or waste management will require an environmental impact assessment. The result of this assessment is the issuance of an appropriate decision on environmental conditions and the need to obtain a water permit.

For the processing of fruit and vegetables, special machines are needed, while to install them, the entrepreneur needs a decision on environmental conditions. In order to receive it, an application must be submitted to the head of the commune, mayor or president competent for the location of the fruit and vegetable processing plant. The application must be accompanied by:

  • a report on the project's environmental impact or the project's information sheet (for investments that may only potentially affect the environment);

  • a copy of the cadastral map certified by the competent authority, including the planned area on which the project will be implemented, and covering the area affected by the project;

  • an excerpt from the land register covering the planned area.

In order for the processing to operate legally, a water permit is also required (it applies to special use of water, e.g. water abstraction in large amounts exceeding 100 m3 per day). A water permit for special use of water is issued for a period not longer than 20 years. The decision on environmental conditions is issued prior to obtaining the decision on the water permit.

GDPR in a fruit and vegetable processing plant

A future entrepreneur running a fruit and vegetable processing plant, in connection with the entry of new EU regulations, i.e. Regulation of the European Parliament and the EU Council 2016/679 of 27 April 2016 on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data and repealing Directive 95/46 / EC (in short: GDPR) on May 25, 2018, is obliged in particular to:

  1. ensuring an adequate level of security of personal data processed, in accordance with the principles set out in the GDPR Regulation - if personal data is processed.
  2. performing obligations arising from the rights of persons to whom personal data relate,
  3. providing yourself, as the data controller, with the information indicated in the GDPR and information on how personal data will be processed (for what purpose) and on what legal basis.

Obligations, in connection with the GDPR, boil down to granting appropriate authorizations to persons who will have access to personal data (employees, contractors, contractors, etc.), signing contracts for entrusting the processing of personal data with third parties, obtaining from the person whose data personal data are obtained, appropriate consent (if required by the GDPR) and informing such a person about his / her rights.

Marketing in a fruit and vegetable processing plant

Depending on the size of the fruit and vegetable processing plant and the scale of its operation, advertising may take various forms. This does not mean that smaller plants are doomed to failure, all you need is good marketing supported by high quality products. Small businesses can also benefit from online advertising. Helpful in this case is, among others portal, where it is possible to set up a free business card.

In Poland, a trend for healthy and ecological food has been noticeable for several years, which is why a regional processing plant with natural juices or jams may turn out to be a bull's eye.

It is worth ensuring that the products are manufactured without unnecessary enhancers. If they refer in some way to regional cuisine, they can be submitted to the European Network of Culinary Heritage. This program brings together producers and producers of regional, natural and ecological products. Culinary Heritage supports their activities and helps them emerge on the wider culinary market.

In larger cities, you can also meet more and more organic product fairs, attended by producers from all over the country, offering their products. In this industry, the most important thing is advertising, but the quality of the delicacies produced. Cooks or culinary bloggers can work wonders by recommending processing plants of their choice.

It may also be a good idea to partner up with local restaurants that will offer processing products or add them to your dishes. Of course, traditional forms of advertising, such as television or the Internet, can also do a lot.