Cukurova, Adana, Turkey's most important agricultural hub, has started to shift away from corn towards more profitable products such as citrus and greenhouse products.
The Chairman of Yuregir Chamber of Agriculture Mehmet Akin Dogan said: "Since they can sell both domestically and abroad, producers reoriented their production towards citrus, fruits and vegetables".
Adana, was the largest producer of corn in Turkey up until 2017. In the last two years, due to the movement towards more profitable products, corn production decreased in the city. Konya, a city located in central Turkey now is the leader in corn production.
In 2018, corn production in Adana decreased by 18.6%. In 2019 this further decreased by 14% and 722.304 tons of corn were produced.
Even though corn is easy to grow, it is not as profitable as citrus, fruits and vegetables, says Chairman Dogan.
"Producers in Adana can harvest four times a year. Since they have the option to market their products both domestically and abroad, they opted for fruits and vegetables. Therefore, our ranking in corn production is falling down." Dogan added.
Dogan pointed out to the increased production of corn in Konya and surrounding cities in the Central Anatolian Region. Emphasising that there is more space for corn production in Konya Valley, Dogan said: "In Konya citrus, fruit and vegetable production is difficult, therefore they rather produce grains such as wheat, barley and rye. In recent years, they increased corn production as well and now Konya is responsible of 20% of the country's corn production."
"Adana grows the earliest and latest oranges in the world"
Seyhan Chamber of Agriculture's board member Cahit Incefikir said that farmers now produce a variety of citrus in the area. Emphasising that Adana has a suitable climate for growing citrus, Incefikir said: "Adana grows the earliest and latest oranges in the world. The wide range of products suitable to be grown in the region motivates many producers to shift towards citrus. Besides, there is increased greenhouse and banana production in the city."