Home / Agricultural Economy / Agribusiness / HAYRETTİN UÇAK: OUR ‘VOLUNTEER FINAL HARVEST PROJECT’ RAISES AWARENESS IN FOOD WASTE

HAYRETTİN UÇAK: OUR ‘VOLUNTEER FINAL HARVEST PROJECT’ RAISES AWARENESS IN FOOD WASTE

Press release…

Unharvested peaches grown in Selçuk district of İzmir province; within the scope of the Volunteer Final Harvest Project carried out jointly by İzmir Provincial Directorate of Agriculture, Konak and Selçuk Districts Directorates of Agriculture and Aegean Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Exporters’ Association (EYMSİB), it was delivered to the needy people with university students participating in the project from all over Turkey.

Hayrettin Uçak

Underlining that the principle of voluntarism and social responsibility is essential for the provision of a sustainable food chain and the spread of food banking in Turkey, Aegean Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Exporters’ Association Chairperson Hayrettin Uçak drew attention to the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals.

Uçak said, “With this new era announced by the UN, the definition of success has changed. Success; it is not just economic, it is directly proportional to the social benefit we provide to the society and environment we live in. Loss of up to 50 percent in the fresh fruit and vegetable sector is a serious waste. With our Volunteer Final Harvest Project, we continue to raise food awareness in all segments of society, from farmers to engineers, from students.”

Pointing out that their first event was in Kınık district of İzmir, Uçak explained, “Selçuk district was our second stop; more than 50 students came from different provinces. Among them, we have young people coming from different countries such as Syria and Chad, studying in Turkey and planning to take part in all steps of the project. With our project, our young people both offer the agricultural crops left in their branches to families in need and prevent food waste. This record of success makes us proud.”

Volunteers in peach harvest

Uçak also noted that while Turkey’s overall peach and nectarine exports were realized as 153 million dollars in 2020 with an acceleration of 69 percent, as of May 1st and August 25th, 2021, it reached 142 million dollars with an increase of 14 percent compared to the same period of the previous year.

“The production leg of the project also has great benefits for our youth. Our aim is to awaken the collective mind in our country and to build a national consciousness that prioritizes food security,” Uçak added…

About İsmail Uğural

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