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Turkey: Poultry exports, and hope, increasing

Turkey's poultry exports in the first quarter of 2009 increased by 254% over the same period in 2007. Poultry producers are now feeling a little more optimistic about the future of the poultry sector in Turkey.

In 2008 the sector's exports stood at $87 mln. While exports of chicken rose 204% to $26.2 mln, exports of turkey climbed 371% to $498,000 in the same period.

Turkey's largest poultry exports in the first quarter of 2009 went to Iraq, with $19 mln, a 16.6% increase over same period of 2008. Iraq was followed by Tajikistan with $1.7 mln in exports, Azerbaijan with $1.7 mln, Vietnam with $1.1 mln and Congo with $551,000.

However, Turkey's poultry exports to the Far East declined by 7% to $5.8 mln in the same period. China was among the biggest importers of poultry, particularly chicken feet.

Poultry Meat Producers and Breeders Association (BESD-BIR) Secretary-General Yüce Canoler said that this record increase in poultry exports was primarily due to demand from Iraq.

"Iraq used to import poultry from Brazil until recently, when they started to face problems with delivery. Following this, they have turned to Turkey. We provide the Iraqi market with fresh poultry, and they choose to buy from us instead of purchasing frozen goods from Brazil," adding that proximity is another important factor.

Source: Today's Zaman

Natalie Berkhout

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