With the support of the Ministry of Family and Social Services, the products of women's cooperatives, which play an important role in increasing women's participation in employment and empowering women, attract attention in the European market as well as in the domestic market. 11 entrepreneur women in Ankara's Ayaş district sweeten European tables by exporting the tomato paste they produce with the cooperative they have established.
Zehra Varol, President of Ayaş Akkaya Agricultural Development Cooperative, stated that women work in every field of production in the field and said that they are thinking about how they can use this labor more effectively over time.
Explaining that they reached a consensus that they could add more value to production by establishing cooperatives from various places after a while, Varol said, “We matured this idea and established our cooperative with 11 female farmers. We who work in the field, let's have a say, work through our own organization and protect our own economic freedom. kazanWe wanted to buy. At the same time, we aimed to further develop our village and region.” he said.
As of 2020, we opened abroad
Stating that they set out to make homemade tomato paste with tomatoes produced in their regions, Varol said, “As the first project of our cooperative, we established our facility to make local homemade paste from Ayas tomatoes that we grow. All of our current production is made with tomatoes obtained from the own fields of cooperative partners, but when it is not enough, we supply it from Ayas farmers. Emphasizing that the market capacity is expanding day by day, Varol said that they first served in the domestic market, but they also expanded abroad as of 2020.
We want to expand to other European countries
Varol continued his words as follows: “We have received our export certificate. We sent a party to the Netherlands, we made our second shipment after it was liked. Even small shipments are very valuable to us right now. Then we sent some products to Germany. Our target is a market for many more countries. There is an order from the Netherlands for this year, we are making preparations for it. We want to expand to other European countries as well. In addition, we are working to export to Middle Eastern countries and Turkic Republics.”
Our goal is to buy products with ancestral seeds.
Pointing out that their second goal is organic agriculture and that they are taking action for it, Varol said, “This year is our second year in the transition to organic agriculture. From now on, our soil will give us our XNUMX% organic tomatoes next year. We will now be able to print the organic logo on our labels. In this way, we will be the first cooperative that produces organic tomato paste in Turkey.” said.
Emphasizing that one of their goals is to buy products with ancestral seeds in the future, Varol said, “One of our goals is to make our ancestral seeds popular again. We are working on it. We aim to produce tomato juice from the original Ayaş tomato. We are currently producing tomato paste and tomato puree.” used the phrases.
Turkish women have always taken an active role in production.
Cooperative President Varol stated that they want to set an example for entrepreneurial Turkish women. Stating that Turkish women have always been actively involved in production throughout history, Varol said, “Women should always take part in production. Be an entrepreneur without fear. Because, if Turkish women are not in production, the country cannot develop. “Women should take initiatives in unity and be involved in production,” he said.