By: Mr. Pradeep Ahire

Jr. Industry Analyst, Textile Excellence

The Turkish clothing industry is the fourth largest supplier in the world, and the second largest supplier to the EU. The Turkish textile and clothing industry has a significant role in world trade, the capability to meet the high standards, and can compete in international markets in terms of high quality, design and a wide range of products. Parallel to the developments in the Turkish textile and clothing industry the Turkish fibers and yarns industry has developed and as a consequence of the increase in demand for textile and clothing products from both domestic and foreign markets, the production, exports and investment in the fibers and yarns industry have increased. Cotton is the essential raw material for the country's textile and clothing industry and Turkey is one of the world's important cotton growers. Turkey ranked seventh in the production of cotton with a total amount of 820,000 tons in the 2006-07 seasons. As one of the results of the Southeastern Anatolia Project (GAP), which is the largest project ever attempted in Turkey, cotton production in Turkey has begun to increase. Irrigation of the Harran Plain began in 1994 and now 471 thousand tons of cotton, which is almost half of Turkey's total cotton production, is cultivated in this region. On the other hand, investment opportunities in GAP, a US$ 32 billion multi-sectoral and integrated regional development project have also been noticed by many foreign investors. Cotton varieties grown in Turkey belong to Gossypium hirsutum.L and until now 54 cotton varieties were registered in Turkey, 34 of which belong to state organizations and 20 of which belong to private sector organizations. Particularly, in the last five years 33 varieties were registered. In Turkey cotton cultivation has been mechanized except first hand hoeing and harvesting. This has production costs were higher and especially harvest problems such as scarcity of worker and picking with trash. In Turkey 99 % of cotton has been harvested by hand. In recent years farmers begin turning to mechanical harvesting. Today in Turkey there are about 100 mechanical harvesters (picker type) and roller-ginning dominate saw-ginning. There are 878 roller-gin and 154 saw-gin plants in Turkey.

Cotton is grown in different regions of Turkey.

  • Aegean,
  • Mediterranean (Cukurova and Antalya) and
  • Southeast Anatolia regions