Although the Turkish cherry season has had its challenges, Yigit Gokyigit, commercial coordinator for Alanar, emphasizes it’s at least a better season than last year’s one: “The cherry season is very challenging this year. However, I can’t say it was the most challenging one in recent history, because I believe last year was the hardest cherry season of the last couple of decades, for exporters and growers as well. The total volume was super low last year in many regions. This year, the major problem occurred at the beginning of the season as the prices were really high and quality was not at its best.”
According to Gokyigit, Alanar purposely skipped out on the start of the season. “We foresaw the issues during the early bits of the season in advance and started our cherry season later. As such, we missed the first weeks of the cherry season on purpose. However, many exporters started the season early and ended up not happy for the first weeks. We have already exported more volume than last year. I think we’ll keep going supplying our cherries all around the world for another couple of weeks.”
Every year Alanar is able to produce more cherries on its very own orchards, Gokyigit explains: “We’ve made a huge investment on the plantation, ever since Alanar was acquired by Tekfen Holding in 2018. We will be harvesting over 500 tons of cherries from our own orchards located in Afyon, Manisa and Canakkale regions this year, and this volume will increase up to 2,000 tons in the next couple of years. Alanar also buy cherries from its large club growers, and our business partners are very satisfied to received cherries from only limited number of growers. Alanar doesn’t only provide full traceability, but also high quality Regina variety cherries to its customers around the world.”
Although prices are currently at a low point in the season, Gokyigit expects prices to pick up again within a couple of days. “Price curve generally does not change in Turkey; it starts at the highest point, then drops during the middle of the season and start to increase again when the season gets closer to the end. Prices are at their lowest point now, so we expect them to increase further in the days ahead. We do expect to see more demand through the end of the season. It’s critical to keep the quality at the same level at this point. We’re very sensitive about our quality. Our high-end technology, made-in-Italy, cherry sorting machine also enables us to provide the best possible cherries in the market to our business partners,” he concludes.