Turkey’s new rules may hit US agri exports
New York, November 2, 2009
Turkey’s new regulations on food and feed products import would impact US exports as Turkey is the 27th largest export market for all US goods, particularly for corn gluten feed (GCF) and dried grains with solubles (DDGS).
According to the US Grain Council (USGC), Turkey issued a new regulation on October 26 placing additional requirements on all food and feed products containing genetically modified components. The ban would cover everything from a bag of potato chips to grains and co-products, it said.
USGC regional director in the Middle East and Subcontinent, Joe O'Brien said that the ban would impact on US coarse grains and producers severely because Turkey is the largest buyer of US corn gluten feed and the third-largest buyer of US distiller's dried grains with solubles, according to a report in Commodity Online.
Turkey imported 435,378 tonnes of CGF in 2008 and 202,422 tonnes in the first six months of 2009. Turkey imported 465,212 tonnes of US DDGS in 2008 and 199,173 tonnes from January through August of this year. USTR reports the US goods trade surplus with Turkey was $5.8 billion in 2008, an increase of $3.8 billion from 2007.
USTR also said the total value of US transgenic crop exports to Turkey exceeded $1 billion in 2007, which are endangered depending on how this new regulation is implemented. O'Brien said one issue currently up in the air is the fate of the vessels currently on the water loaded with US goods.
Turkey's Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs has to give instructions to the ports regarding this regulation, but that has not happened yet, USGC said. Rebecca Fecitt, USGC director of biotechnology programs, said the food and feed industry in Turkey can make a significant difference in this matter.