Turkey Seed Industry News 2020

This page features a compilation and selection of Turkish seed industry news briefs, summaries and leads, with an emphasis on events that impact or affect provinces, regions, counties, cities and locales in Türkiye Cumhuriyeti, or as it is known in English: the Republic of Turkey.

The news covers trends and events regarding seed regulation, testing, legislation, phytosanitary issues, intellectual property rights, biotechnology (genomics, gene-editing) plant breeding, agronomy and cropping, with original sources linked.

This page will be updated throughout the year, with most recent briefs listed first.

April 2020

Amendment to Seed Authorization and Supervision Regulation

Amendments have been made to Turkey’s regulation concerning Authorization and Supervision in the Seed Sector, which lays down the principles for the authorization of legal entities who grow and sell seeds in Turkey. All the new amendments are listed in detail here in Turksih language. According to this article in Turkish news, a number of changes were made to the regulation. Among them concern the “farmer registration system”; now seedling producers may register under the greenhouse registration system or agricultural production registration system. Beyond this , changes are concerned with the procedures and jurisdictions for applications and issuing of documents, including certification and authorization for breeders, producers and processors. Furthermore, the amendments address regulations for seedling technology and equipment and the issuance of ornamental plant producer certificates for forest engineers; procedures for issuance of tissue culture, seed producer documents and certificates, as well as provisions for auditing and administrative sanctions. 

The rise of domestic seed sector

A writer of Turkish news website Hurriyet.com, Hasan Bozbey, has penned an editorial highlighting the push in Turkey to boost domestic seed production. He writes about how one Turkish chemical company has refurbished an old textile factory in Orhangazi, repurposing it for seed production and/or processing, noting the new operations will involve local seed production on an area of 60 hectares. He then goes on to highlight other steps taken to boost domestic seed sector in recent years, citing growth figures in Turkish Domestic seed production since 2018, and recapped a project announced in February by the Minister of Agriculture and Livestock, which will involve establishing new testing and breeding laboratories, and the training of 15,000 seed producers over the course of two years.

Turktob chairman rallies domestic seed sector to prevail in ‘covid war’

Chairman of the Board of Directors of Turkey Seed Union (TÜRKTOB) and the Economic Cooperation Organization Seed Association (ECOSA) Savaş Akcan has advocated to strengthen and reinforce the Turkish seed industry. Featured in interviews with Turkish news outlets in April, the Turktob chairman highlighted the necessity to continue to be more self-sufficient in seed production at a time when much international trade has been slowed or halted. Reiterating that the Turkish seed sector provides employment to hundreds of thousands, and stands to lose millions this year from loss in exports, he goes on to relay details about relief and grant programs being implemented at this time. His interviews in Turkish language can be found here on Antalya Son Haber, as well as on Milliet.com, here and here.

DECEMBER 2019 & JANUARY 2020

TURKTOB holds 12th OGM

TURKTOB (Turkey Seed Growers Association) Turkey Seed Growers Association held their 12th Ordinary General Meeting in Ankara on December 21, 2019.  Presided over by General Manager of the General Directorate of Agricultural Research and Policies Mr. Özkan Kayacan, Dr. Suat Yilmaz, Deputy General Manager of Crop Production, Head of Nursery and Seed Affairs Department of General Directorate of Forestry, Fahrettin Ay, Chairman and members of the Board of Directors of TÜRKTOB and Sub-Associations. Me Savaş Akcan  Turktob President and Chairman of of Organization for Economic Cooperation Countries (ECOSA) gave an opening speech highlighting the strengths of the Turkish seed industry, which he said is represented via the association by some 53,500 members (entities)

ISF Eyes Istanbul for 2023 World Seed Congress

At the national congress of the Turkish Seed Federation (TSUAB) on 16 December 2019, the International Seed Federation revealed that it was considering holding the 2023 World Seed Congress in Istanbul in collaboration with TSUAB and Turkted, Turkish Seed Industry Association) 2023 will be a symbolic and significant year for the global seed industry, as it will mark the 99th anniversary of ISF and the 100th anniversary of the Turkish Republic.

All about the Turkey seed industry

Aydinlik.com.tr has published an article revealing various facts and statistics about the Turkish seed industry, as originally presented at the 2nd International Agricultural and Food Ethics Congress in Izmir last October. According to the data, Turkey seed trade is worth some $4 billion, while the foreign traded seed is valued at $500 million, including $260mn in exports and $240mn in imports. As for quantities cited, the country produced 1,060,000 tons of certified seeds, in addition to 4 billion seedlings, 1.7bn ornamental plants and 188.7mn saplings. The article provides data and information about the Turkey Seed Growers Association, and legal references concerning farmers rights (seed saving), as well as GMO and hybrid seeds. 

Leading Turkish seed breeding firm link up with agri-tech university to boost R&D 

Bursa haber news reports that the R&D Department of leading Turkish seed company, May Seeds (May Tohum) is linking up with the  Faculty of Agricultural Sciences and Technologies at Omar Halisdemir University to develop training modules to enhance knowledge and equipment capacity related to basic genetics and plant breeding for young technicians and agricultural engineers working with the company and studying in the faculty.