Türkiye’s tropical fruit exports exhibited an 85 percent increase last year from 2020 to amount to $13 million, according to a trade group.

Hayrettin Uçak

In the first half of 2022, exports already reached $7.9 million, said Hayrettin Uçak, the head of the Aegean Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Exporters’ Association, (EYMSİB) adding that the country’s exports leaped 225 percent between 2018 and 2021.

“In 2018, revenues from the export of tropical fruits were $4 million, climbing gradually to $5 million in the following year and further to $13 million in 2021,” he said.

The range of produce local growers sell abroad also expanded to include papaya, mango, pineapple, dragon fruit, coconut, passion fruit and bilberry, he added.

Revenues from kiwi exports exceeded $5 million, while revenues from mango rose from only $144,000 to $1.1 million, according to Uçak.

The U.K. was the top export market for local mango growers at $948,000, while bilberry sales to Germany climbed from $524,000 to $761,000, he furthered.

“In 2020, Türkiye exported tropical fruits to around 60 countries, but last year the number of those countries rose to 83,” he said.

In the first half of 2022, exports to Russia amounted to $1.5 million, while sales to Romania grew 10 percent to $920,000 and the U.K boosted its imports from Türkiye from $119,000 last year to $981,000, he said, adding that exports to Germany increased by 38 percent and sales to Spain amounted to $553,000.

Uçak predicts that revenues from tropical fruit export may reach $20 million in 2022.

Uçak last week said that fresh fruit and vegetable exports increased by 9 percent in January-June from a year ago to $551 million.

The industry’s export revenues, which were around $1.2 billion in 2021, are expected to rise to $1.3 billion this year and further up to $1.5 billion in 2022.

Germany, the U.S. and Russia were the top three export markets, and local companies exported their produce to 122 countries in the first half of this year, Uçak said.

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