Producers and exporters in Turkey are content with the increase in tomato exports for the first five months of the year.
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According to the figures announced by Eastern Black Sea Exporters Association's, from January to May, Turkey exported 314 thousand 66 tons of fresh fruits and vegetables and earned 229 million 868 thousand 717 USD in return.
In this period, tomatoes topped fresh produce exports. Turkey exported 68 thousand 414 tons of tomatoes to Russia and earned 62 million 465 thousand 273 USD. Last year during the same period, Turkey exported 24 thousand 310 tons of tomatoes in exchange of 20 million 801 thousand 867 USD. Tomato exports increased by 118% in terms of volume compared to the same period last year, and increased by 200% in terms of value.
Trabzon, a city located in Turkey's Black Sea region, exported 15 thousand 244 tons of tomatoes in the period from January to May. The revenue from this export totaled 13 million 854 thousand 750 USD. Trabzon increased its tomato exports to Russia by 257% in terms of volume compared to the same period last year and increased by %298 in terms of volume.
"Tomatoes topped fresh produce exports"
Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Exporters' Association and Eastern Black Sea Exporters Association's Vice President Ahmet Hamdi Gurdogan said that Russia has always been important for our fresh fruit and vegetable exports.
Gurdogan pointed out that Turkey exported 34 fresh produce items to Russia and tomatoes topped these exports.
Gurdogan emphasized that they are content with the increase in exports and said: "We had a good start with tomato exports to Russia and we aim to increase these export figures even further."
Pointing to Turkey's advantage in terms of logistics, Gurdogan said: "The entry procedures to the Russian market work slowly and this influences our exports negatively. However, we believe that high-level contacts will ease these procedures and our exports will increase even further."
Gurdogan contended that the quota of 150 thousand tons for tomatoes is not enough and that this should be increased to 250 thousand tons and applied annually instead of cumulatively.
He also mentioned that exporters work hard to increase the variety of products in fresh fruits and vegetables exports. ■