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Muhammet Öztürk: Aegean exporters achieve 20 percent of Türkiye’s agrifood exports

Press release…

Aegean agricultural exporters, which are the champions of Türkiye by realising 20 percent of the country’s agricultural products exports alone, have intensified their cooperation steps with the European Union.

“The European Union is a vital export market for us”

Muhammet Öztürkl

Muhammet Öztürk, Chairperson of the Aegean Cereals, Pulses, Oil Seeds and Products Exporters’ Association, stated that as Aegean Exporters’ Associations (EIB), they have started an intensive work process since 2019 on sustainability, which constitutes an important agenda in order to better prepare the sectors for the responsibilities of the EU Green Deal.

“The European Union is a vital export market for us and accounts for a significant portion of our total exports. As of October 2023, we are in the ‘Transition Period’ of the Border Carbon Regulation Mechanism, which will continue until 31 December 2025. The European Continent, Türkiye’s largest export and import partner, has a 48 percent share in our total exports and our exports are 109 billion dollars. We also realise approximately 25 percent of our imports from the EU. As EIB, we are working to ensure sustainability in the supply chain starting from the farmer to the shelf with our joint work with universities, research institutes, provincial and district organisations of agriculture, stock exchanges, chambers of agriculture, chambers of commerce, national and international institutions,” he said.

“While Turkey exported 35 billion dollars worth of agricultural products with an increase of 2.8 percent in 2023, Aegean Exporters’ Associations became Türkiye’s champion by exporting 20 percent of the country’s agricultural products exports with a spike of 8.8 percent to 7.3 billion dollars,” he noted.

“EU Mission delegation saw and analysed our sustainability efforts on site”

Pointing out that they are the world leader in organics, he explained, “Our country, which makes a difficult product such as organic, has come a long way in pesticides. Türkiye has 35 years of experience in the organic sector thanks to the Aegean. Aegean’s perspective on agriculture and food is based entirely on sustainability. In the coming period, we are in close contact with all our stakeholders in order to reach our agricultural export target of 10 billion dollars with high-tech investments and sustainability vision. In this context, we have shared our proposals and projects with the European Commission officials, which include clear targets based on sustainable food system such as pesticides, biotechnical control, contract farming in order to determine a road map in line with the ‘Green Transformation’, which we have adopted as Turkey’s new growth strategy, especially with the EU.”

“The visit of the EU Mission delegation to our country created the opportunity to see and examine the work of all relevant stakeholders, especially producers, exporters, universities, laboratories, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry,” he added…

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