Turkey expected to produce more wheat in 2022-23

ANKARA, TURKEY – Turkey is expected to increase wheat production by 1 million tonnes in 2022-23, even as farmers face soaring input costs, according to a report from the U.S. Department’s Foreign Agricultural Service. of Agriculture (USDA).

Wheat production is estimated at 17 million tonnes. About 2 million tonnes should be durum wheat. Harvested area is expected to contract by 300,000 hectares, but improved weather conditions are expected to boost yields.

Fertilizer and fuel costs have risen significantly due to the weak Turkish lira, rising international commodity prices, supply chain issues and the war in Ukraine, the USDA said.

In response, the government increased support payments to wheat farmers for fertilizer and diesel and provided a one-time additional payment to specifically offset higher fertilizer costs. However, wheat farmers do not believe these payments are sufficient to fully cover these higher costs.

“There are concerns that some wheat growers are reducing fertilizer use to save costs, which could impact yields and overall production quantities,” the USDA said.

Wheat consumption is forecast at 21 million tonnes, up 200,000 tonnes from the previous year due to increased household demand for wheat products.

Wheat imports are expected to increase year-on-year by 1 million tonnes to 11 million tonnes in response to growing demand for bread and other wheat products. Most imported wheat came from Russia and Ukraine. According to market sources, Turkey continues to import wheat from Russia. At the same time, with supply chain uncertainties in Russia and Ukraine, Turkey appears to be looking for alternative suppliers for reinforcement, the USDA said. For example, Turkey has increased its imports from Romania and Moldova this year. And, in March this year, Turkey imported 230,000 tons of wheat from Argentina, a less common supplier of wheat to Turkey.

Wheat exports in 2022-23 are forecast at 6.65 million tonnes, up 100,000 million tonnes year-on-year, assuming availability of imported wheat for processing and re-export and growing demand in regional markets.

Flour exports are estimated at 3.1 million tonnes in 2021-22, up year-on-year due to stronger than expected export demand.

Turkey is the largest flour exporter in the world. Iraq has always been the main destination for Turkish flour. However, demand is expected to decline in coming years as Iraq invests in milling capacity. In response, Turkish industry is looking for new markets in Africa.

In 2021, the main African destination for Turkish flour was Djibouti, the USDA said.

Sharon P. Juarez