There are around 710 flour production facilities in Turkey. However, 746 of these facilities are actively working and the remaining 234 are idle. Turkey’s annual wheat production is on average 20 million tons. While the average capacity utilization of flour factories in the world is 65%, this rate is 45% for Turkey. Turkey which is one of the biggest flour exporters in the world mainly exports to Iraq, Sudan and Syria.
Grain production and consumption of Turkey is mainly wheat. Wheat production of Turkey, which is one of the biggest wheat flour exporters in the world, has an average of around 20 million tons in recent years. Other than wheat, the other grains produced by Turkey are barley, corn, rice, rye and oat. The milling industry in Turkey is predominantly based on wheat. According to the data of the Turkish Flour Industrialist Federation (TFIF), Turkey exported 3.5 million tons of wheat flour in 2016.
Turkey, which is an important point of intersection in many respects, is one of the few countries that can self-sustain their food with its geographical position and product variety. The fertile soils, the favorable climate for cultivation and the adequate precipitation rate allow Turkey to grow almost any kind of crop. Turkey is one of the most important countries of the world in agricultural production, with agricultural activities in almost every region. According to the data of the World Bank, in 2010, arable land accounts for 31 per cent of the country’s arable land.
GRAIN PRODUCTION IN TURKEY
According to the data of the Turkish Statistical Institute (TURKSTAT), the grain product that is produced the most in Turkey is wheat. Turkey, which produced 22 million tons of wheat in 2013, reduced this amount to 19 million tons in 2014. However, it is estimated that wheat production in Turkey which produced 22.6 million tons with an increase of 3.5 tons in 2015 will decrease to 22.6 million tons in 2016.
The second important crop in Turkey’s grain production is barley. Barley production shows a declining trend over the years. Barley production, which was around 7.9 million tons in 2013, dropped to 6.3 million tons in 2014 and to 5.8 million tons in 2015. In 2016, Turkey’s barley production decreased to 6.7 million tons.
Corn production in Turkey is also increasing. The increase in demand for corn in Turkey is thought to be due to the usage increase in consumption in food industry rather than direct consumption. While the corn production was 5.9 million tons in 2013 and 2014, it increased to 6.4 million tons in 2015. Corn production is expected to remain the same in 2016.
The amount of rice which is another important grain product was around 900 thousand tons in 2014 despite a slight decline. Paddy production, which was 900 thousand tons in 2013, decreased to 830 thousand tons in 2014. The production of corn which increased to 920 thousand tons in 2015 is expected to remain the same in 2016.
Rye and oat production did not show any significant change between 2013 and 2016. Both grain products are produced between 200 thousand and 350 thousand tons per year.
GRAIN CONSUMPTION IN TURKEY
According to the April report of the United States Department of Agriculture Foreign Agriculture Service (USDA FAS), the most consumed grain product in Turkey is wheat. In the 2013/14 season, Turkey consumed 17.75 million tons of wheat and in the 2014/15 season it decreased to 17.5 million tons. Turkey is expected to consume 18 million tons of wheat in the 2015/16 season with an increase of 500 thousand tons, and it is predicted that consumption will decrease to 17.5 million tons in 2016/17.
The second important crop in Turkey’s grain consumption is barley. Barley consumption is decreasing in parallel to the production. Barley production, which was around 6.9 million tons in the 2013/14 season, decreased to 5.3 million tons in the 2014/15 season. In 2015/16 season, it is estimated that 6.9 million tons of barley will be consumed. Turkey is expected to consume 5.5 million tons of barley in the 2016/17 season.
Corn consumption in Turkey increases in parallel to the production. The consumption of corn, 5.9 million tons in the 2013/14 and 2014/15 seasons, is expected to increase to 6.4 million tons in the 2015/16 season. Corn production is expected to remain the same during the 2016/17 season.
The consumption of rice, another grain consumed in Turkey, amounted to 769 thousand tons in 2013/14 season. The consumption which increases to 780 thousand tons in the 2014/15 season is expected to increase to 790 thousand tons in the 2015/16 season and decrease to 780 thousand tons in the 2016/17 season.
Rye and oat consumption did not show any significant change between 2013/14 and 2016/17 in the same direction as production. The consumption of both grain products is between 200 thousand and 350 thousand tons per year.
GRAIN TRADE IN TURKEY
The most imported product in the grain group in Turkey is wheat. According to data provided by the Turkish Statistical Institute (TURKSTAT), wheat imports range from 4 to 5 million tons. Turkey, importing 3.7 million tons of wheat in 2012, will increase this amount to 4 million tons in 2013. The import of wheat, which rose to 5.2 million tons in 2014, decreased to 4.3 million tons in 2015. In 2016, Turkey imported 4.2 million tons of wheat. The reason why Turkey, which can meet the domestic consumption with its domestic wheat production, resorts to wheat imports is the quality wheat that is needed for the exported food stuff. Turkey mainly exports wheat as processed products (flour, pasta, etc.). Therefore, grain-based wheat exports are extremely limited.
Corn is the most exported and imported grain products after wheat. Corn imports show ups and downs over the years. According to TURKSTAT’s data, Turkey imported 807 thousand tons of corn in 2012, and with a record increase in 2013, 1.5 million tons of corn was imported. In 2014 and 2015, Turkey imported 1.4 million tons of corn and in 2016 it decreased corn imports to 534 thousand tons.
Corn exports are extremely low when compared to imports. Turkey, which exports 210 thousand tons of corn in 2013, reduced this amount to 64 thousand tons in 2014. Turkey, which exported 75 thousand tons of corn in 2015, decreased the amount of corn exports to 44 thousand tons in 2016.
The other most imported grain products after wheat and corn are rice and barley. Despite in low quantities, the corn is imported. In 2013, Turkey imported 283 thousand tons of rice. In 2014, the amount of rice imports increased to 493 thousand tons. In 2016, the amount of rice imports decreased to 292 thousand tons. Barley imports are very low. Between 2012 and 2016, the amount of barley imports realized by Turkey is 9 to 164 thousand tons.
PULSES PRODUCTION IN TURKEY
Dry pulses production in Turkey decreased drastically in the last 12 years due to the fact that the cultivation area of dry pulses decreased significantly in the last 10 years. Total pulses production also decreased to about 400 thousand tons in the last 10 years. According to this; the total pulses production, which was 1.4 million tons in 2006, declined to 1 million tons in 2015.
It is seen that the highest production amount of pulses belongs to that of chickpea. According to data obtained from TURKSTAT, Turkey’s chickpea production, which was 506 thousand tons in 2013, decreased to 450 thousand tons in 2014. Turkey, which produced 460 thousand tons of chickpeas in 2015, is expected to produce 455 tons of chickpeas in 2016.
The chickpea is followed by the red lentils in terms of the high amount of production. The production of red lentils, which was 395 thousand tons in 2013 and decreased to 325 thousand tons in 2014, increased to 340 thousand tons in 2015. In 2016, Turkey is estimated to produce 345 thousand tons of red lentils.
While the production of dry bean amounted to 195 thousand tons in 2013, it increased to 215 thousand tons in 2014. It is expected that Turkey which produces 235 thousand tons of dry beans in 2015 will produce same amount in 2016.
PULSES TRADE IN TURKEY
Decrease in agricultural areas where pulses are cultivated and consequently decrease in production also cause increase in imports of dry pulses from Turkey. The total import of pulses, which was 272 thousand tons in 2012, rose to 335 thousand tons in 2013, 433 thousand tons in 2014 and 470 thousand tons in 2015.
The most imported product in pulses group is lentils. In 2013, 199 thousand tons of lentils were imported. This amount increased to 303 thousand tons in 2014, to 313 thousand tons in 2015 and to 337 thousand tons in 2016. According to data obtained from TURKSTAT, the most imported pulse after lentil in 2015 was peas. The importation of chickpeas, which is 25 thousand tons in 2012, 43 thousand tons in 2013 and 33 thousand tons in 2014, increased seriously in 2015 and reached 82 thousand tons. But in 2016, 60 thousand tons of peas were imported. According to the report titled “Turkish Pulses Market Overview” published by the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service (USDA FAS) in 2016, Turkey imports most of lentils from Canada. Turkey exports its imported lentils to Central Asian and African countries such as Iraq, Sudan, Egypt and Saudi Arabia.
Chickpea is the third most imported product after lentils and peas. However, imports of chickpeas are on a downward trend. Turkey, which imported 34 thousand tons of chickpeas in 2012, increased this amount in 2013 and imported 56 thousand tons of chickpeas. In 2014, imports fell slightly to 41 thousand tons. In 2015, the downward trend continued to hit 37 thousand tons and in 2016 it decreased to 30 thousand tons.
The imported amount of dry beans, which is the most imported product in 2015 after lentils, peas and chickpea, is gradually decreasing. While 30 thousand tons of dry beans were imported in 2012, this amount decreased to 25 thousand tons in 2013. However, imports of dry beans, which rose significantly to 54 thousand tons in 2014, decreased to 34 thousand tons in 2015. The amount of dried beans imported in 2016 was 35 thousand tons.
Lentil has the highest share in exports as well as imports in 2015. The exports of lentils, which were 197 thousand tons in 2012, declined to 178 thousand tons in 2013. Exports of lentils, which rose to 183 thousand tons in 2014, continued to rise, reaching 219 thousand tons in 2015 and 243 thousand tons in 2016.
The second most exported pulses in 2015 is peas. The export of pea was on average 23 thousand tons in 2012, and it increased to 31 thousand tons in 2013. In 2014, the export of peas, which declined to 24 thousand tons, increased again to reach 62 thousand tons in 2015. However, the export of peas that fell again in 2016 to 46 thousand tons. Turkey’s export of chickpeas in 2015, as opposed to the previous two years, increased to 22 thousand tons. The export of chickpeas, which was 22 thousand tons in 2016, did not catch the level of 28 thousand tons in 2011.
TURKISH FLOUR INDUSTRY
It is known that the first mills in history were used on Anatolian soil. This deep-rooted past has pioneered the Turkey’s milling sector and both the production and exports of the flour and milling technology.
When we look at the production in Turkey today, it is seen that annual flour production is well above domestic consumption. According to the Turkish Flour Industry Inventory prepared by the Southeast Flour Industrialists’ Association, there are active and idle 710 production facilities in Turkey. Of these, 476 are active while 234 were idle. When looked from a regional perspective, the installed capacity of 62 active and 25 passive companies in the Black Sea region is 4.6 million tons; the installed capacity of 45 active and 30 passive companies in the Mediterranean region is 3.5 million tons; the installed capacity of 47 active and 22 passive companies in Aegean Region is 3.4 million tons. The installed capacity of 20 active and 3 passive facilities in Eastern Anatolia Region is 1.8 million tons; the installed capacity of 124 active and 43 passive facilities in Central Anatolia Region is 9 million tons and the installed capacity of 87 active and 25 passive companies in South Eastern Anatolia Region is 8.3 million tons. Accordingly, Turkey has an installed capacity of 40 million tons and its annual production is 20 million tons. However, when compared to the installed capacity, it is observed that Turkey is producing well below its potential.
On the world market, Turkey is one of the two largest flour exporters with Kazakhstan. Increasing its efforts from 2005 on, Turkey caught up with the flour exports by Kazakhstan and EU countries. Turkey’s exports, which amounted to 1.2 million tons in 2006, 2007 and 2008, rose to 1.8 million tons in 2009 and 2010. In 2011 and 2012, the increase continued to reach 2 million tons. Turkey’s 2013 wheat flour export is 2.1 million tons. The main countries exported by Turkey are Iraq, Sudan and Syria.