Gazipasa's special climate allows farmers to grow 17 types of tropical fruits, such as avocado, lychee, longan, passion fruit, dragon fruit and mango. While banana and avocado already grown in large gardens, other fruits are still in trial stages. In a total area of 170 hectares, farmers harvest 850 tons of avocados per year. While the harvest is already completed in 120 hectares of the farming area, the collection of avocados is still ongoing in the remaining 50 hectares.
Export for the first time
Up until this year, avocados produced in Gazipasa circulated only in the domestic market. Now for the first time they are being exported to Russia, Georgia and Ukraine.
The prices of avocados range from 1,80 to 2,20 Turkish Lira (0,29 to 0,36 Euro) per piece. Once the avocados are sorted by their size, they are packed and sent to Russia, Georgia and Ukraine.
Costs are too high, farmers don't get their share
"We try to make the best out of our farmer's products. In the avocado trade, there is a customs fee of 1500 USD (1.318 Euro) per ton. This fee must be smaller. Only then farmers can earn a better profit. I think we should support farmers. Even if we export, because of high costs farmers don't get their well-deserved share. Last year, transportation costs for a truck was only 5.000 USD (4.394 Euro), now it stands at 8.000 USD (7.030 Euro). Costs are already too high, and the extra cost of 1500 USD (1.318 Euro) at the customs doesn't really help the situation" said Broker Ali Sanli.
"We aim to export 300.000 avocados"
Sanli said that in total 35.000 pieces of avocado were exported; 15.000 to Russia, 7.500 to Georgia, 12.500 to Ukraine. "This season we aim to export 300.000 pieces of avocado. There is a demand from abroad," Sanli added.
"An important product for Gazipasa"
Export company owner Ahmet Yesilkilinc explains: "This year we're exporting to Ukraine for the first time. We've added two pallets of avocado next to cucumber. We receive more and more orders. This is very good news for Gazipasa and for our country. We will continue to export avocados while we work on different varieties of the product."