Apricot planted areas as of years in Turkey is not seen much change despite experiencing a surge in production and yield quantities. Late spring frosts are accepted as the most important reason for these fluctuations.

Apricot production areas increased to 1.3 million decares and production reached 847 thousand tons as of the end of last year. For the purpose of fixing the yield of dried apricots, harvest prediction commissions were established in Malatya, Kahramanmaraş, Elazığ and Sivas. As a result of this study, the amount of dried apricot production expected in 2020 was determined as 104 thousand tons in these provinces. Dried apricot production amount was 88 thousand 392 tons last year.

Fresh apricot exports amounted to 68 thousand tons in 2019. The export of fresh apricots, which was 21 thousand tons in the first 5 months of last year, is 21.6 thousand tons in the same period of 2020. Dried apricot exports reached 100 thousand tons last year. The export of dried apricots, which was 42 thousand tons in the first 5 months of last year, is 38 thousand tons in the same period of 2020.

It is important to prevent pesticide residue in the product in order to ensure product safety and security in domestic and foreign markets. In this context, producers should be informed and necessary inspections should be made.

Licensed warehousing will be a solution…

It is envisaged to solve the financing problems that arise during the harvest period with the production of good quality and market demands, with the spread of licensed warehousing and product specialized exchanges.

While the construction of the Dried Apricot Licensed Warehouse Project with a capacity of 6 thousand tons is completed in Malatya province, which meets about 80-85 percent of the dried apricot production, the warehouse is expected to be operational in the season.

Price stability is expected to be ensured by spreading apricot sales throughout the year with licensed warehousing. Thus, as the producer will not have to sell his product immediately after harvest, he will be able to sell and increase his income when the price he expects is formed.

It is important for producers to act together in order to carry out activities such as marketing their product as they deserve, obtaining cheap inputs, using credit, joint use of tools or equipment and gathering under the umbrella of a producer association or cooperative.

Due to the high labour costs in the production of dried apricots, the use of machines such as tilt and awning harvesters, apricot picking unit, wet apricot classification machines, sulfurizing and drying units should become widespread.

About İsmail Uğural

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