Turkiye Eases Olive Oil Export Restrictions Amid Expected Production Surge

Turkish authorities have eased restrictions on the export of olive oil, amid expectations that production will pick up this season, removing an outright ban that was introduced in August last year.

The ministry imposed the ban on bulk and barrel olive oil in the face of the steep price increase in the local market. The ban also aimed at securing the supply of olive oil, which had dropped both Türkiye and other olive-growing countries due to climate-related issues.

Türkiye is one of the largest producers of olive oil in the world. However, the country’s olive oil output almost halved in the previous two seasons. Türkiye is expected to produce more than 450,000 tons of olive oil in this season. It is estimated that there are also 250,000 tons of olive oil in stock.

This week, the Trade Ministry announced that it set a quota,which will allow the export of 50,000 tons of olive oil until November 2024.

Under the new regulation, which the ministry communicated to the Aegean Oil and Olive Oil Exporters’ Association, 10,000 tons of olive oil could be exported each month over the next five months.

Last month, several associations called for an end to the export ban, which prompted talks with the representatives of the associations and government officials.

Despite the introduction of the ban on exports, prices in the local market have not come down, failing to produce the desired result.

One-liter riviere-type olive oil was sold at 288 Turkish Liras (around $9) in supermarkets in January, but its price rose to 360 liras in June. The price of two-liter extra-virgin olive oil increased from 520 liras to 794 liras.

Poor quality of the olive crop pushed up the prices of not only olive oil but table oil, according to experts. The price of an 800-gram package of table olives climbed from 192 liras in January to 236 liras in June.

The ban did not apply to the export of packaged and boxed olive oil.

The export ban was hard on both producers and consumers, said Emre Uygun, the president of the Aegean Olive and Olive Oil Exporters Association, welcoming the easing of the export restriction.

“This season olive oil production will be better. We are expecting the production to be around 450,000 tons. Unless some unexpected events occur, this will be a “good season” for all olive oil producers in the world,” he said.

The expected higher production in this season played a role in the ministry’s decision to relax the export ban, according to Ali Ekber Yıldırım, a journalist expert on agriculture.

“November will be the new harvest season. By that time the export ban may be reconsidered or more quota for olive oil exports could be allocated,” Yıldırım said.

Source: hurriyetdailynews

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