Case study: Turkey/Brazil food trade

Much like its neighbour Argentina, Brazil is an established player in terms of global food supplies. It is also a key exporter of some foodstuffs of great interest to Turkish importers.

Much like its neighbour Argentina, Brazil is an established player in terms of global food supplies. It is also a key exporter of some foodstuffs of great interest to Turkish importers. 
Let’s see what Brazil has on offer, and where its products can fit into Turkey’s extensive food and drink market.
Brazil is South America’s biggest food & drink exporter
By sheer volume, Brazil outweighs its regional rivals and is South America’s largest exporter of food and drink items. For context, in 2016 neighbouring Argentina exported foodstuffs worth $31.3 billion. And Brazil? Over double that total with $67.7 billion.
By category, Brazil’s biggest food and drink export groups, including potential ingredients, are:
• Soya beans - $19bl
• Coffee - $4.83bl
• Beef - $4.12bl
• Poultry meat - $3.95bl
• Fruit juice - $2.1bl
• Refined sugars - $2.1bl

Turk’s imports of Brazilian foodstuffs are small – so there is room to grow

At present, Brazil remains low down on Turkey’s list of preferred food trade partners. Out of the total $1.79bl worth of Brazilian food and non-food goods imported by Turkey in 2016, $81.6m went to animal products, $189m on vegetable products, and $193m on other foodstuffs; mainly bulk commodities like soybean meal or raw sugar.
Coffee is the largest individual export product. In 2016, according to data from the MIT Atlas of Economic Complexity trade database, $93.8m worth of Brazilian coffee was bought by Turkish importers.
Up next is soybeans; a vital ingredient for Turkey’s massive food processing industry. These exports totalled $81.9m.
Brazil is famous for its beef. It was the world’s largest beef exporter in 2016, sending millions of tons around the world. Surprisingly, very little actual Brazilian beef cuts ended up in Turkey. 
Instead, Turk’s preferred to buy the cows themselves, with cattle being an import commodity worth $80.5m. Again, these purchases were largely to support Turkey’s extensive agricultural and food production complex.
It might seem Turkey will remain a small market for Brazilian manufacturers. However, based on MIT data on Brazil’s top export items, there are many market entry points that are worth exploring at WorldFood Istanbul. Let’s find out what they are.

Coffee & fruit juice: Brazilian’s best shot to Turkish success

While tea remains Turks’ hot drink of choice, coffee has been a robust market force in recent times. 
Turks do also have a long tradition of coffee drinking, dating back centuries. As such, its domestic brands that really control the market. More recently, however, a diversification in tastes means foreign varieties are being enjoyed by Turks nationwide.
Consumption has risen annually too across the past, says research from the International Coffee Organisation (ICO). IOC data says the average person in Turkey consumed 920 grams of coffee between 2015-2016. That’s a big step up from the 595 grams per person consumed between 2012-2013. 
A partial explanation for this is the growing number of international coffee chains establishing themselves in Turkey. Costa and Starbucks are just some examples.
As it stands, Brazil controls 72% of the $130m Turkish coffee import sector. 
Next up is fruit juice. In our latest roundup of Turkish food and drink industry news, it was revealed that beverages, including juices, is a big import sector in Turkey. Very simply, domestic consumption is outweighing production, meaning Turkey has to look outside its borders for products to fill the gap.
Turkey IsBank research showed a 37.4% import rise in all types of beverages in 2017, against nationwide drinks market growth of 3.3%. The demand for drinks is expected to grow at a CAGR of 4.9% in by 2021. 
Fruit juices are something of a Brazilian speciality – especially orange juice – so manufacturers should be check out the Turkish market in earnest. 17.7% of Turkish beverage imports are fruit juices; over 1.1bl litres worth is consumed by Turks each year.

Ingredients & localisation offer more ways to do business in Turkey

Turkey is the 7th largest producer of food and drink items in the world. As such, it constantly eats up vast quantities of ingredients every year. Such is the nature of the beast, but Turks are rightly proud of their expansive food manufacturing industry. For Brazilians, this offers scope to supply it with the in-demand commodities needed to keep production steady.
Sugar, for instance, is a big requirement for Turkey’s multi-billion-dollar confectionery industry – especially in the face of an upcoming privatisation of Turkish state-owned sugar factories. A dip in local output is expected, leaving it up to international suppliers to meet demand.
Then there is localisation. Such is Turkey’s expertise and production infrastructure that many international companies set up their own facilities there. Brazil meat giants BRF are just one of these.
In 2017, BRF announced it had acquired Turkish poultry specialists Banvit in a bid to expand its halal operations. 98% of Turks identify as Muslim, and halal food is a significant industry in Turkey. BRF is keen to grab a slice of this market through its acquisition of Banvit and subsequent localised poultry production.

Brazilian food & drink producers: find Turkish buyers at WorldFood Istanbul

Brazil has much a lot to offer Turkish food & drink importers. You can find them at WorldFood Istanbul.
The event is Turkey’s leading food and drink event, making it the ideal place to meet thousands of Turkish professionals, including retailers, manufacturers, wholesalers and other key buyers.
They all attend the show to find the latest products from international producers – so be there to grab your slice of Turkey’s $5 billion import market.
You can book your space at the show here.
Questions or queries? Contact our team today.