Turkey’s animal production surges 8.6 percent in 2017

Turkey’s animal production surges 8.6 percent in 2017

ANKARA - Anadolu Agency
Turkey’s animal production surges 8.6 percent in 2017

The total number of animals in Turkey amounted to 60.7 million last year, an 8.6 percent rise year-on-year, according to the country’s statistical authority on Feb. 7.

The Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK) said the number of bovine animals—including cattle and buffalo—reached 16.1 million in 2017, marking an annual increase of 13.2 percent.

“In the group of bovine animals, the number of cattle increased by 13.2 percent and became 15.9 million and the number of buffalo increased by 13.6 percent to 161,439,” the institute said.

The official data showed the total number of ovine animals rose by 7.2 percent over the same period, reaching 44.3 million, including nearly 33.7 million sheep and 10.6 million goats.

The figures also revealed there were over 0.3 million donkeys, horses, mules, camels and pigs in Turkey as of the end of 2017.

Meanwhile, the country produced 20.7 million tons milk, up 12 percent year-on-year, and 114,471 tons honey with an annual hike of 8.3 percent. Turkey’s exports of dairy products, bird eggs and natural honey amounted to over $700 million, while imports stood at around $120 million in 2017.

As noted in the report, the number of poultry animals—chickens, turkeys, ducks, and geese—stood at nearly 350 million, rising 4.4 percent from the end of 2016.

Some 221 million broiler hens and 121 million laying hens were counted under chickens, which constitute 98.5 percent of all poultry animals in Turkey.

Meat imports 

The TÜİK releases animal production statistics twice a year. The data are collected through province and district directorates of Turkey’s Food, Agriculture and Livestock Ministry.

In recent months, the country has been debating the purchase of meat from overseas due to the rising prices in the domestic markets.

“I don’t want to give a timeframe, however, Turkey won’t import meat for sure. I believe we will be one of the countries that export meat,” said Turkish Food, Agriculture and Livestock Minister Ahmet Eşref Fakıbaba, speaking at the Anadolu Agency editor’s desk last month.

In 2017, Turkey’s live animal exports stood at nearly $35 million, while the country imported $1.2 billion worth of live animals, compared to the previous year’s imports amounting to $600 million and exports worth around $30 million.