Exports from the Aegean region dropped 32 percent compared to the previous 12-month period, falling to $201 million this year.
Aegean olive producers, who experienced record exports between 2005 and 2006 although it was a cyclically low production year, preferred to keep their products home during the 2006-2007 marketing year, a cyclically high production year, Anatolian news agency reported.
Although the number of olive trees in Turkey has doubled within the last five years thanks to government subsidies and the positive course of price levels, the amount of exports from Turkey decreased over the past year because of falling prices around the world.
According to Aegean Exporters’ Association data, the medium and large-size producers preferred to keep between 50,000 and 70,000 tons of products in their stocks as the price of olive oil decreased from 4,000 euros to around 2,000 euros per ton.
Chairman of TARİŞ the Olive and Olive Oil board Cahit Çetin noted that the producers’ reaction was normal considering prices. “Our organization makes suggestions based on the surveys we conduct in global markets. At the beginning of the marketing season, we cautioned the producers against the low prices, but we never misdirected them,” Çetin said.
Çetin went on to explain that TARİŞ — a major Turkish producer — couldn’t be blamed for recent developments and asserted that the situation was the result of global pricing games. He underlined speculation that the price of olive oil, which is currently around 2,440 euros, will drop even further because Spain — the largest olive oil producer in the world — expects a record level crop this year.
TARİŞ Olive and Olive Oil Vice Chairman Ali Güreli stated that the markets have dovetailed as a result of keeping the products in stock as opposed to exporting.
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