2016 International Year of pulses that General Assembly of The United Nations declared in order to raise awareness about the pulses was officially launched with the introductory meeting held in Rome on 10 November.
2016 International Year of Pulses that General Assembly of The United Nations (UN) declared to raise awareness about the benefits of dry legumes, to promote the production and trade and in order to encourage new and intelligent methods in the food chain, officially began with the introductory meeting held in Rome on 10 November.
FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva, Aydın Adnan Sezgin Rome Ambassador of Turkey which is from the countries which currently holds the co-chair of the steering committee, FAO Resident Representative of Pakistan Nadeem Riyaz and the representatives of 14 countries to take part in activities related to legumes in the world attended to the introductory meeting of 2016 International Year of Pulses that was organized with the participation of Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) member countries.
Sending a message to the promotional event, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-mun has pointed out the importance of pulses in fighting hunger. FAO Director-General Da Silva stressed pulse products are placed in people’s tables for centuries, though it did not get what it deserves; and he said he believed 2016 will increase awareness of consumption of legumes. Aydın Adnan Sezgin, Turkey's Ambassador in Rome said “Pulses consumption, hunger is crucial for effective struggle."
For “2016 International Year of Pulses” which was launched with the motto "Nutritious seeds for a sustainable future", the UN gave a message: “All kinds of pulses from dry beans to peas have a positive impact on health and lives of people in especially developing countries as they are cheap, tasteful, and contain high amount of protein and essential micronutrients.”
THE WORLD SPEAK OF YEAR OF PULSES
That 2016 is declared the International Year of Pulses pleased both producers and civil society organizations representing the sector. One of those who expressed their opinions on the subject was Global Pulses Confederation (GPC) Chairman Hüseyin Arslan. According to Arslan, as well as preventing hunger, pulses have a high potential in overcoming obesity and chronic health problems such as diabetes. Arslan said “We congratulate the UN due to its focus on pulses and the importance of pulses on global food security and the nutrition.” President of Global Pulses Confederation National Year of Pulses Committee and CEO of Hakan Foods Hakan Bahçeci said the following: “Pulses are a very important food source for developed and developing world. Because of this reason, we are grateful to the UN and FAO to declare 2016 the International Year of Pulses."
GPC Executive Vice President and President of India Pulses and Grain Association (IPGA) Pravin Dongre drew attention to the economic side of pulses: “In emerging markets, pulses are usually cultivated by small landowners and especially by women. Pulses provide an additional source of food and income for these farmers. The promotion of global pulses brings the potential to increase the income of these families. "
YEAR OF PULSES EXCITEMENT IN TURKEY
Being among the world's leading pulses producers, Turkey is the co-chair of the Steering Committee created for 2016 International Year of Pulses. So 2016 becomes more important for pulses industry representatives in Turkey. Emphasizing this, Ahmet Tiryakioğlu, Chairman of Gaziantep Commodity Exchange (GTB), expressed the year 2016 which was declared as International Year of Pulses worth of gold in terms of the sector and he adds: “Turkey may be the most lucrative country in year of pulses using the experience in agriculture. In order to promote our products and to open new doors in foreign markets for these products, we had an important opportunity in our hands at an international level. We can bring this situation to a positive level in the point of enhancing exports through joint efforts and endeavors.”
The President of Southeastern Anatolia Cereals, Pulses, Oil Seeds and Products Exporters' Association Mahsum Altunkaya emphasized on the contribution of this initiative on agricultural production and employment. Saying that 2016 Year of Pulses can be transformed into an opportunity for development,
Altunkaya stated that fertile soil of Anatolia will be provided with the production that it deserves with incentives and new agricultural policies and that it could also provide a significant employment for white-collar workers’ human labor. Emphasizing on exports, Mahsum Altunkaya added: In Turkey which is an agricultural country, promoting the development of pulse production will enable us to export our own products. This will be an important step towards the 2023 targets.”
CALL FOR BULGHUR YEAR
The United Nations declared 2016 the Year of Pulses and this has also led to calls concerning other products which have not been mentioned to public enough. Speaking at an event in Italy, Dilara Koçak, Dietary and Nutrition Specialist, has called the UN for bulghur. Reminding that the UN declared year 2013 As Year of Quinoa which is a grain of South America and 2016 as “International Year of Pulses”, Koçak said “I believe bulghur should get the value it deserves after these elections. My dream is to see the United Nations declare International Year of Bulgur as soon as possible.”