Tuesday, May 11, 2021
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Turkish farmers saddened by lower yields in harvesting season

ISTANBUL: Sedat Kacar, a Turkish farmer from the province of Edirne, had a heavy heart as he was busying with sunflower harvesting on his fields in the northwestern end of Turkey.
Kacar, who owns two fields in a location near the Turkey-Greece border in Edirne, was saddened by the expected yields loss due to extreme weather this year, at a time when the country has already been hit hard by the raging COVID-19 pandemic.
In addition to the adverse economic effects of the pandemic, Kacar said that this year the sunflower farmers in the region have also been struggling against extreme heat and aridity, which reduced both the quality and yields of their products.
“This area did not receive enough rain during the winter months,” Kacar told Xinhua, noting that extreme weather temperatures led sunflowers to get matured early, leading to lower yields. He expected to collect 1.5 tons of sunflower seeds from his land of 10,000 square meters (about 2.47 acres), which would bring in about 5,250 Turkish liras (about 715 U.S. dollars). This year the lowest buying price of sunflower seeds was determined by state institutions as 3,240 liras per ton, up from 2,500 liras in 2019. Meanwhile, the costs of the farmers in the area have increased significantly from last year as the prices of seeds, fertilizers and pesticides were all paid in dollars, according to Kacar.
“As the Turkish currency loses its value against the greenback, the money we spend increases automatically,” he noted. – Agencies

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