The Aegean Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Exporters' Association have announced the 2019 export figures. With a total of 890 million USD (nearly 800 million Euro) worth of exports, the association increased its exports by 7% compared to previous year. 2020 goals include expanding exports to the Far East market.
In November, the association exported 107 million USD (96.17 million Euro) worth of products which marked a record high in the association's 53 year-old history. In the same month, chestnuts were the top export product from the region with an export value of 19 million USD (17.08 million Euro). Chestnuts were followed by dried tomatoes with 8 million USD (7.19 million Euro) and gherkins with 7.6 million USD (6.83 million Euro).
Hayrettin Ucak, the Chairman of the Aegean Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Exporters' Association evaluated the exports in 2019 and announced the association's 2020 goals.
Overall in 2019, cherries were the top export product, said Ucak and continued: "We have ongoing projects on the products such as bananas, dragon fruits, kiwis and avocados. In Dikili, Izmir a greenhouse production area will be launched. We plan to grow more of these products in the coming months."
Ucak emphasised that cherries, table grapes, chestnuts, mandarins, gherkins and pickled peppers, dried tomatoes and fruit juice concentrates are among the top export products from the Aegean region.
"We mainly exported to Russia, Germany, the United States, the UK and Italy. We met with our cherry, peach, citrus and pomegranate producers and listened to their problems. Besides, our team visited nearly 700 member companies, met with producers and authorities, and prepared a report about this." said Chairman Ucak.
Stating that they continue marketing activities abroad, Ucak said: "In 2019, we found the opportunity to promote our products in Germany, Japan, China and Hong Kong. This year, we aim to continue this trend and go to the countries that can potentially be our new markets. Besides China, which is one of the biggest potential market, we aim to participate in the fairs that will take place in South Korea, Vietnam and India. Together with Asia, we also aim to expand our markets to Africa this year."