Citrus producers in Turkey’s south are expecting a 10% increase in exports this year. Kemal Kaçmaz, president of the National Citrus Council, has stated that the cultivation season this year started two weeks late, but there is still hope since Turkey has come to a significant position in citrus production.
“Last year, we exported 1.74 million tons of citrus, bringing in $732 million,” said Kaçmaz. “This year, we exported 5,800 tons of citrus in a week, worth $2.3 million. We have become an important global player in citrus. We are ranked eighth in the world in production. In exports, we are in the second place in some products and third in others. Our hope this year is to have a 10 percent increase compared to last year’s export figures. Last year, we couldn’t harvest the crops for 30 days due to heavy winter conditions. If we do not experience severe winter conditions this year, we hope to increase our existing exports to higher levels.”
Kaçmaz said these world-class quality fruits produced in Turkey help respond to worldwide demand. He added that they are working on alternative markets as well as traditional markets: “Even if we cannot make it this year, we will have the opportunity to send citrus fruits to alternative markets in the coming years.”
“In our current markets, Russia tops the list, followed by Iraq in the second. Our exports to Europe have increased by 25 percent compared since last year. This is a very positive development for us”
According to hurriyetdailynews.com, citrus exports constitute 45 percent of Turkey’s total fresh fruit and vegetables exports.
“Everybody knows that Turkey is a global player in this area, and it has a strong say in production and exports,” Kaçmaz concluded.