By NEWS DESK
The food sector, a USD 10 bn industry in Turkey with TRY 40 bn export target in 2023, has become more vital globally with the pandemic. So, investments and transactions in the sector increase. One important step in the sector came from Turkey’s OYAK (Turkish Armed Forces Assistance and Pension Fund). OYAK included the food sector in its structure within its sustainable growth plans. Signing a purchase deal with Sanset Gida, OYAK added Tadelle, Sarelle, ve Gol brands within its group of companies as well as Sagra, which has been transforming hazelnuts into an industrial product in Ordu since 1936.
Stating that food is the market least affected by the pandemic, OYAK General Manager Suleyman Savas Erdem said that the importance of the agriculture and food sector in the world increased with the COVID-19. “We have seen that these non-cyclical sectors are not affected in times of crisis. We have serious investments in the agricultural sector. With this move, we will have the opportunity to demonstrate OYAK’s determination and innovative perspective in strategically important food sector as well,” he said.
75% of world hazelnut production areas are in Turkey, which only meets the 60% of global hazelnut production, according to a 2018 Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) report. “We want the increase productivity by using our strength in R & D in this area and we aim to grow this sector,” Erdem said.
Will grow in domestic and export markets
With this acquisition, which will merge OYAK’s power and Sagra’s 85 years of knowledge and experience, the brand will improved and product range will be increased in line with the opportunities in the market, OYAK GM said. He also emphasized that a significant volume in food exports is targeted. “With Sagra, we aim to have a say in export markets as well as domestic market with high value-added products by reaching a rich portfolio via increasing the categories, product range and number of brands in a short time.”
The snack market has a high potential
The food industry, in which OYAK entered with Sagra, is among the strategic industries in the world and in Turkey. World food giants predict that the potential of the food industry will be several times the current figures. Turkey’s agriculture and food exports in 2023 is planned at TRY 40 bn. The food sector itself grew by 25% in 2020 reached TRY 122.7 bn. Drinks have the largest share in the food sector, followed by snacks. Therefore, OYAK group plans to expand its product range in Sagra to the whole snack market, which currently totals TRY 27.5 bn and have high growth potential in both domestic and export sectors.
Leader in hazelnut production
Turkey is a market leader in hazel nut in the world. Global hazelnut production has reached 1 million tons, according to 2018 FAO data. Meeting 60% of this production, Turkey is followed by Italy with 15% and Azerbaijan with 6%. Turkey made 68% of world hazelnut exports in 2019, according to FAO. Turkey exported USD 1.9 bn of hazelnuts in 2020, despite pandemic. Sagra’s production base is in Ordu, which comes first among 39 hazelnut producer provinces with 217,000 tone annual production capacity. With Sagra purchase, OYAK targets to increase the value added products and exports shelled and raw hazelnuts.