FAO/GIEWS - Foodcrops & Shortages 01/00 - TURKEY (7 February)

TURKEY (7 February)

Despite recent reports of drought conditions in eastern Turkey, the overall prospects for the 2000 winter crop are favourable so far reflecting good rains in the agriculturally important areas. The 1999 wheat production is estimated at 18 million tonnes, about 14 percent below the previous year and about 4 percent below average, due to drought.

The government is planning to set its grain support prices at a maximum of 35 percent higher than world prices rather than the more than twice world prices that caused heavy borrowing to finance grain purchases from farmers. Instead a direct income support system will be adopted to protect farmers.

Two major earthquakes which struck the country in August and November 1999 have killed more than 17 000 people, caused more than 52 000 major injuries and an estimated 630 000 homeless people. The main affected areas in and around Izmit were reported to be mainly industrial but also produce grains and oilseeds.

Turkey's state grain board (TMO) bought from farmers in 1999 a total of 5.1 million tonnes of cereals, comprising 4.2 million tonnes of wheat and 818 000 tonnes of barley.

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