BY DR. MD. FAKHRE ALAM IBNE TABIB
Turkey is the unique country that bridges two continents in the
world, one arm reaches out to Asia and other to Europe. The
history and culture of Turkey attract millions of tourists from
rest of the world. The agriculture in Turkey is the biggest
sector among the economic sectors contributing 7.9% to the
national GDP with 62.5 billion US$ in 2014. A total of 17.2
million peoples, which is 22.7% of the total population are
involve in agriculture. Total agricultural land in Turkey is
nearly 23.2 million ha with 6 ha average land holdings. Cotton,
corn, rice, sunflower, apple, apricot, banana and citrus fruits
are the major crops that grown in Turkey.
The economic size of Turkish agriculture with respect to world
agricultural economy has risen to 7th rank in 2009 and first in
the European agricultural economy in the same period.
is the second biggest apparel and textile supplier to the
European Union (EU), after China, and is the eighth largest
textile exporter in the world and the fourth largest apparel
exporter. In which, domestic consumption of cotton is about 1.8
million metric tones. Turkey is also a major importer of cotton,
which import 924.4 thousand metric tones of cotton in 2014. The
production capacity of Turkish cotton fibre is about 846
thousand metric tones from 468 thousand hectares of land. Cotton
is cultivated in four main regions- Aegean region, Anatalya,
Cukurova and Southeastern Anatolia. Cotton is planted in
March/April and harvested from September through November.
In Turkey, most of the cotton farmers are practicing
mechanization in cotton planting through harvesting with a
minimum farm size of 10 ha. Cotton production has achieved a new
dimension with high yielding potentiality of open pollinated G.
hirsutum cotton varieties in Turkey. It is ranked as the 3rd
country in highest cotton yield in the world with a yield
potentiality of 1810 kg/ha lint. Major contributors in high
yielding potentiality are- better planting techniques, certified
seeds, well equipped and economics of scale. Turkey's cotton
farmers are experiencing high-density cotton planting system (HDPS)
with 150000 plants/ha, which is the major contributing factor in
high yield. It is also noticeable that Turkey didn't grow any
hybrid and biotech cotton till the period. Nazilli Cotton
Research Institute plays a major role in cotton research and
development in Turkey. This Institute developed 37 cotton
varieties and worked to improve cotton for high yield potential,
tolerant against drought, water deficit, salinity and other
aspects of cotton production since 1934. Turkey's cotton has got
another dimension in organic cotton production and naturally
colored cotton production. It has becoming the key player in
organic cotton production after India in the world.
comparison, cotton in Bangladesh is also an important crop for
the small-scale farmers for revenue earning and major raw
material for the textile industries. Bangladesh textile sector
is the largest sector among the industrial sector and
contributing 10% of the national GDP, 40% of manufacturing value
and 77% of export earnings. This sector consumes 0.91 million
metric tones of cotton fiber in it's 400 (approx.) spinning
mills with 600 spinning units, 1740 weaving units, 2300 knitting
units and 5000 RMG units every year. But domestic production of
cotton didn't reached to the expected pick due to several
reasons- i.e. low yield capacity & long duration of existing
varieties, crop competition, scarcity of land for cotton
cultivation and lack of improved or modern cultivation
practices. Cotton research in the country didn't conceive
desirable modern technologies due to lack of modern research
facilities and appointment of adequate researcher. Bangladesh is
cultivating open pollinated HYV and hybrid cotton varieties
still per unit yield are low compared to Turkish cotton.
Biotechnological research has just started in the country for
the introduction of Bt cotton.
also a major affected country in changing climate with
increasing saline affected areas and expansion of drought areas.
Turkish cotton production techniques and technology is an
opportunity in improving cotton yield and domestic production.
Introduction of saline and drought tolerant variety from Turkey
can adopt cotton in the changing climatic situation. A group of
cotton experts from Bangladesh had recently visited the Nazilli
Cotton Research Institute in Turkey and get aware of their
cotton technologies. It opens a window for collaboration between
the scientists of Cotton Development Board in Bangladesh and
Nazilli Cotton Research Institute in Turkey.
Among the top 40 cotton producing countries in the world, 22
were OIC members and their share in the world cotton production
is accounted for 26.2%. The major exporter and importer are lies
with OIC cotton growing countries. Thus, OIC cotton growing
countries are the major player in cotton production, export and
import and also key player in apparel exports in the world. As
the member of OIC, Bangladesh and Turkey can benefit by sharing
the knowledge and ideas in cotton field and this cooperation can
be extended to other OIC cotton growing countries.