Agreements signed with the Agrokor Group and Croatian Ministry of Agriculture 


Croatia MOU signing

​UTIA Chancellor Larry Arrington (third from left) and UT Extension Assistant Dean Robert Burns (right) sign agreements with representatives of the Agrokor Group and the Croatian Ministry of Agriculture to promote innovative solutions in agricultural production and food processing between UTIA and the Republic of Croatia.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture recently entered into a set of unique international partnerships that will promote innovative solutions in agricultural production between Tennessee and the Republic of Croatia.
UTIA Chancellor Larry Arrington, UT Extension Dean Tim Cross, AgResearch Dean Bill Brown and UT Extension Assistant Dean Robert Burns traveled to the Balkan nation to meet with representatives from the Agrokor Group, a food and drink producer that employs nearly 40,000 people and is the largest privately held company in Croatia. While in Zagreb, Arrington signed Memorandums of Understanding with Agrokor and the Croatian Ministry of Agriculture.
Through these international agreements, experts from UTIA will provide knowledge and experience to the food and industry sectors within the Agrokor Group and the Croatian Ministry of Agriculture Extension Service. This private/public collaboration will provide a unique opportunity to address research and extension challenges and opportunities in food production, processing and marketing that are common to both Tennessee and Croatia.
“International partnerships are an incredible opportunity to showcase our faculty and research on a global scale,” said Arrington. “We are looking forward to our collaboration with Agrokor and the Ministry of Agriculture to develop new research and extension projects that will benefit the people of Croatia as well as those in Tennessee.”
In addition, UTIA faculty will work with their Croatian counterparts to develop and gain practical knowledge in livestock breeding, crop farming and environmental management. This collaboration will take place in both Croatia and Tennessee through an exchange program to share ideas and practices.
“The Agrokor Group is utilizing cutting-edge technology to produce a wide variety of food products from field to fork. This partnership will give UTIA faculty the opportunity to evaluate new food production and processing technologies first hand and adapt the best for use in Tennessee,” said Burns, who will coordinate cooperative activities under the MOUs.
“This agreement is an example of how a private industry can utilize the expertise of our UT researchers and scientists in the safe and efficient production of food products in the global arena,” said Brown.
The UT Institute of Agriculture provides instruction, research and public service through the UT College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, the UT College of Veterinary Medicine, UT AgResearch, including its system of 10 research and education centers, and UT Extension offices in every county in the state.
Dr. Robert Burns, UT Extension Assistant Dean for Agriculture, Natural Resources and Resource Development, 865-974-7112,
Doug Edlund, UTIA Marketing and Communications, 865-974-7141,