Turkey’s Flour Export Breaks the Record of All Time in January-June


Aug 18, 2022 | Agricultural Markets News

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Turkey is the 21st largest economy in the world and ranked among the countries that import the most Wheat, according to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) report released in June. However, it is also one of the top wheat-producing countries. Turkey’s Wheat imports are used as raw materials in production for export. Therefore, it needs to increase self-sufficiency in the domestic market. The self-sufficiency rate fell to 89% in 2020. 

Turkish Statistical Institute’s data shows Wheat production in 2020 was 20.5 million tons and 17.6 million tons in 2021. The main reasons for this decrease are drought, fertilizer, and diesel prices. Also, there was a yield loss due to adverse climatic conditions in 2019/2020. Regarding regions, the highest production occurred in Konya, Şanlıurfa, and Diyarbakır. 

According to the Food Outlook 2022-2031 report prepared by the FAO and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) at the end of June, Turkey was the third largest Wheat importer after Egypt and Indonesia, with 9.5 million tons on average in 2019-2021. This figure is expected to remain the same in 2022/23. This year, the Wheat production in Turkey is predicted to be 19 million tons.  

As of 2020, Turkey’s Wheat consumption was 20 million tons. Wheat imports were 10.8 million tons, and exports were 7.5 million tons. Turkey’s Wheat use is 24.2 million tons in 2021/22. It is projected to increase to 24.4 million tons in 2022/23. Turkey ranks first in this regard after countries such as China, India, Pakistan, and Russia.

Turkey’s total Wheat usage level is higher than the production level; the main reason is Turkey’s production potential and advantage in the wheat-based food industries. Turkey imports for use in the wheat-based food industry rather than domestic market and exports these products.

An 80% of Turkey’s Wheat consumption is for food, 11% for feed, and 6% for seeds. As of 2020, 37% of the Wheat supply consists of imports. While Iraq, Somalia, Venezuela, and Yemen are the leading countries to which Turkey exports Wheat, Russia is the country that imports the most Wheat. According to the AgFlow data, Russia led their import market with 3.7 million tons of Wheat shipment from March to August, followed by Ukraine. Since the beginning of the war, it has been repeatedly emphasized that almost all of Turkey’s Wheat imports have been from Russia and Ukraine.

Turkey Flour

Turkey’s Flour Export

Wheat imports aim to meet the exports of wheat-based products (such as flour and other bakery products, pasta, biscuits, and bulgur) in these industries. For example, Turkey ranks first in flour exports and second in pasta exports after Italy. In the 2020/21 production season, 58.6% of Turkey’s Wheat export consisted of Wheat flour, 34.3% of pasta, 6% of biscuits, 0.3% of bulgur-semolina, and 0.8% of Wheat.

In the first half of this year, Turkey’s flour exports increased by 33 percent compared to 2021 and reached 652 million dollars, breaking the record of all time in January-June.

Mr.Ayşegül Selışık, FAO Deputy Representative for Turkey, said: The high demand for durable dry food products on a global scale, mainly due to the Covid-19 epidemic, triggered the consumption demand for Wheat and wheat-based products. In addition to this cyclical reason, the country’s shrinkage in Wheat cultivation areas and the yield losses caused by extreme weather events also affect the import amount of Wheat. 



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