Citrus, one of Turkey's the top export products in the fresh produce sub-sector, attracted many Europeans in November. Eight European countries were in the list of the top 20 export destinations.
The export of citrus to European countries has increased owing to the adoption of better standards and higher quality. Russia is at the top with 165 tons which totaled 77 million 327 thousand USD (around 67.4 million Euro).
Turkey exported a total of 43.747 tons of citrus to Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, UK, Bulgaria, Poland, Romania and Czech Republic. In November, this export totaled 22 million 700 thousand USD (around 19.8 million Euro).
This year, Turkey exported 1.417 tons of citrus to Italy, up by 74% compared the same period last year when the volume of export was 815 tons. Turkish citrus exports to Italy have seen the highest increase among the European countries over the last year and provided a revenue of 787.413 USD (686.547 Euro) in November.
The export of citrus to Bulgaria increased by 63% this year. While, the volume of export was 6.222 tons in 2017 November with an input of 4 million USD, this year Turkey exported 10.172 tons of citrus to Bulgaria and got 485.000 USD (422.845 Euro) in return.
These countries are followed by the Netherlands with 50%, Poland with 49%, Romania with 37%, Czech Republic with 17% and the UK with a 6% of increase compared to last year's citrus trade.
"Increased export to European countries is very good news"
Kemal Kacmaz, head of the National Citrus Council reminded us that the citrus export season started on August 20 this year. The end of November marked an increase in citrus export by 34% compared to the same time last year.
Kacmaz said that during this period, the export of 1 million 650 thousand tons of citrus provided a total of 734 million USD (around 640 million Euro).
"Looking at the numbers by the end of November, we exported mandarins the most. Then, lemons followed this with 262 thousand tons. Orange export was third in line with 102 thousand tons, which was followed by grapefruit with 45 thousand tons. Russia was again the top country of export when it comes to citrus." said Kacmaz.
In November, the top export product was lemon according to Kacmaz. Then he explained:
"Lemon exports in November increased by 39%. The export volume last year was 65 thousand tons, and this year it is 90 thousand tons. This is promising for our sector and we are pleased about it. This season we expect an abundant harvest. We managed this by finding new export markets. We are pleased by the increased export to European countries; especially to Italy and the Netherlands. This shows that Turkish citrus producers and exporters meet the world standards and they are recognized around the world. Turkey now has become a global player in citrus trade."
"Lemon consumption increased"
Kacmaz pointed to the increased consumption of lemons in the world and the said that Turkish farmers produce high standard products and the world has started to demand these. He continued: "We aim at increasing our export especially to the Far East in the coming years. We work hard to achieve this. Once we are successful in the Far East market, Turkish citrus will be world famous."
Lastly, Kacmaz reminded us that the 14th. International Citrus Congress will be held in Mersin in 2020 and that they are looking forward to this.