Turkey has gained $204 million in foreign exchange from ice cream exports over the past five-and-a-half years. According to data from the Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat) and the U.N., Turkey is among the 15 largest exporters of ice cream and frozen food in the world, having sold 88,366 tons of ice cream to 68 countries and four free-trade zones from January 2012 to June this year and Iraq emerges as the leading destination for Turkish ice cream.
Given that one scoop of ice cream weighs 50 grams on average, Turkey exported 1.767 billion scoops of ice cream in this period.
Turkey gained $36.3 million in revenue from ice cream exports in 2012, $38.3 million in 2013, $35.7 million in 2014, $36.4 million in 2015, $34.8 million in 2016 and $22.4 million in the first half of 2017.
The export value per kilogram of ice cream exports stood at $2.3 million.
The largest volume in ice cream exports was sold to Iraq during this period. A total of 18,360 tons of ice cream were exported to the country for $48 million in the five-and-a-half-year period. Iraq was followed by Kosovo with an export revenue of $16.6 million, Albania with $12.8 million, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (KKTC) with $9.4 million, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) with $7.6 million and Azerbaijan with $5.1 million.
Export markets for Turkish ice cream producers also include countries located thousands of kilometers from Turkey, including the U.S., Australia, Brazil, China, Indonesia, South Africa, India, Canada, Pakistan, Senegal and Chile.
Burhan Sakkaoğlu, the secretary general of the Packaged Milk and Milk Products Industries Association (ASÜD), said that the Middle East, the Balkans, the Caucasus and Turkic Republics and the region of North Africa have come to the fore among export markets in the sector.
Asserting that the ASÜD has some expectations for the Turkish state to strengthen Turkey's position in foreign markets, Sakkaoğlu pointed out that the foremost issue is animal-borne disease, asserting that these diseases must be eliminated and a plan put in place to eradicate this. He went on to say, "The European Union allows imports of Turkish milk, dairy products and ice cream produced with milk products only from approved enterprises. Therefore, the number of certified dairy enterprises producing dairy in accordance with EU standards needs to be increased with studies conducted to improve their quality."
Sakkaoğlu underlined that market activities in the Middle East, Far East and North Africa, which are major markets for ice cream exporters, must be improved and the overseas promotion of boutique ice cream and local ice cream varieties must be given importance. He added, "The world has an ice cream market of 16.6 billion liters. Like Indonesia, Vietnam and India, Turkey is one of the fastest growing ice cream producers in the world."