2014-2015 citrus export season has started. As it is well known, citrus fruit with an average annual production of 3.6 million tons, exceeding $ 1 billion in economic value, especially grown up in the Mediterranean and Aegean Regions, constitutes an important sector being a direct or indirect source of income for about 5 million people.
Since the Citrus Promotion Group began its activity in 2009, citrus exports have increased by 16 %, both in value and quantity. In 2009, while citrus exports reaches 800 million US $, they reached 931 million US $ in 2013. Citrus exports, of big importance in the export of agricultural exports, has covered a lot of ground thanks to our Ministry support, to the dedicated efforts of the Citrus Promotion Group and our exporters ‘determination and tenacity, by finding new markets, increasing our country’s exportation, by the efforts made in innovative activities in modernization of the agriculture, by giving great importance to the Research and Development activities and by using in an efficient way last technological developments in all levels of citrus industry to be able to compete with competing countries on international ground.
Over 2013 January-December period, Turkey general citrus exports reached 1.371.699.156 kg for an income of foreign currency of 931 million US $. In the previous 2012 January-December period, the quantity of citrus exported was 1.283.677.189 kg for a value of 911 million US $. In 2013, Turkish citrus was exported to 102 countries.
Also thanks to the promotion activities carried out by the Citrus Promotion Group, citrus exports have increased in almost all the countries targeted. Considering citrus exports realized between 1 January and 31 December 2013, there has been an increase of 7 per cent in quantity and of 2 per cent in value, in comparison with the previous year at the same period. Within citrus varieties, the exports of easy peelers during this period was of 29 per cent in quantity and 18 per cent in value, reaching an income value of 353.914.441 US $, putting this variety at the first place of the citrus varieties exported. Increases in citrus exports were also registered in target countries like Russia, Ukraine and Germany where the Citrus Promotion Group carried out advertising activities. Compared with other international citrus providing countries, Turkey ranks at the third rank for citrus exports.
Thanks to the advertising activities of the Citrus Promotion Group in both domestic international events like Fresh Turkey Fair, Mersin Food and Agriculture Fair, Mersin Citrus Festival, Dörtyol Citrus Festival and Mediterranean Culinary Days, where about 55 countries participated and prestigious events abroad, like Berlin Fruit Logistica, Iran Agro Food, Irak Agro Food, World Food Moscow, Asia Fruit Logistica and Fresh Produce Ukraine, where the participation was made with special designed stands, Citrus Promotion Group has succeeded in attract attention on Turkish citrus. It has also been possible to meet strategic actors in the market due to trips in different countries like investigation commission to South Africa, to Novorossiysk, sectorial commercial trip to Poland.
By supporting variety diversification, Remote Sensing Data Systems, B2B projects and a wide advertising campaign beginning from July 2014 and ending Mars 2014 concerning the "Turkish Citrus Industry” in various communication instruments like Komsomolskaya Pravda, Russia Kommersant, Teleprograma, Sovetskysport newspapers, Gastronome, OK!, Zdoroive zdr.ru, gastronom.ru, kp.ru, magazines, internet sites, sovsport.ru Russia 1 and NTV Television Channel, Citrus Promotion Group has increased the public awareness for Turkish citrus fruit with its advertising campaign "Raise awareness about Turkish Citrus Products” and has carried forward Turkish Citrus both on scientific and promotion terms.
Apart from it, Citrus promotion group is carrying out a UDTI project, through the Committee of Development of Fresh Fruit Exports to Far East countries to provide Far East markets with Turkish citrus fruit and the activities deemed necessary are meticulously prepared to reach new markets.
14th World Citrus Congress will be held in Mersin in 2020, with the support of the Ministry of Economy and the intervention of the Mediterranean Exporter Unions, Citrus Promotion Group, Turkey Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Sector Board and the other related organizations. 1500 delegated from 56 countries are expected to participate. It is a chance for Mersin to host the 14th World Citrus Congress, of major importance due as it is a scientific and academic convention.
Citrus new season is started on September, 18th 2014. Don’t forget that citrus production and exportations are increasing from one year to the other, constituting an important fruit sector, counting for half of our fresh fruit and vegetable exports. I wish to all our exporters a very profitable and lucrative export season, with new markets and a broader range of products.
Citrus Promotion Group Management Board Chairman
Mediterranean Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Exporter Union Management Board Chairman
Turkey Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Sector Board Chairman