Call for Turkish Government to support organic sector
The head of the Union of Turkish Chambers of Agriculture (TZOB), Şemsi Bayraktar, has appealed to the Turkish Government to support the organic farming sector with relevant policies. Between 1996 and 2016, Turkey increased its organic farming area from 6,800 ha to 524,000 ha, and has 69,000 organic farmers, mainly located in the eastern Anatolia region. Bayraktar said,
“There were only eight organic products manufactured in Turkey in 1996, while this number has reached 238 today. The main focus was concentrated in the Aegean region at first, but it spread rapidly across the country. Turkey’s organic production is mainly for export, with dried products leading the list. “We need to increase our export volumes, but we also need to make sure we export processed products that have high added value,” Bayraktar said. “We need to promote Turkey’s organic farming sector to improve its global position.”
According to data from the Organic Farming Research Foundation and the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements, organic farming is practised by 7 million people in 178 countries on a total area of 57.8 million hectares. In terms of market size, the US currently leads the way, with US$43.1 billion, followed by Germany and France.