One of Turkey’s leading flour producers, Eksun Gıda, continues its success in flour production and accessibility with sustainable investments and export goals. The company, a market leader in the retail sector with its Sinangil brand, achieved an export volume of 52,000 tons in the first half of the year and aims to reach 130,000 tons by year-end.
We continue our factory visits to some of Turkey’s leading flour producers. We had the opportunity to inspect the production lines and the R&D center activities on-site at Eksun Gıda’s factory in Tekirdağ, Turkey, which produces Sinangil, the country’s first packaged flour brand, among the nation’s major industrial groups.
With over 60 years behind the Sinangil brand and more than 200 product varieties, including the Sinangil Gluten Yok (Gluten-Free range), Eksun Gıda not only leads the retail flour market but is also among the pioneering companies exporting flour worldwide. Operating in two separate facilities in Tekirdağ and Konya, covering an area of approximately 96,000 square meters, Eksun Gıda achieved sales exceeding 2.4 billion TRY in the first half of the year. In its Ministry of Industry and Technology-approved R&D center located in the Tekirdağ factory, Eksun Gıda, considering the concept of flour based on needs and social responsibility, has initiated 3 new pioneering projects this year. The company has introduced groundbreaking efforts in the field of quality flour production.
EXPORTING FLOUR TO THE UK AND DUBAI
During our visit to Sinangil’s factory in Tekirdağ, Sabri Yıldız, the Deputy General Manager in charge of Factories and Supply at Eksun Gıda, accompanied us. He emphasized that Eksun Gıda will continue to provide the most significant support to Turkey’s leading role in flour production. Yıldız stated, “With an annual average production of 20 million tons of wheat, our country can meet the demand of the domestic market. More than an average of 3 million tons of flour is being exported. At Eksun Gıda, by closely observing the trajectory of global dynamics, coupled with our proactive sustainable vision, R&D strength, and robust financial capital, we continue to increase our share in the export market.”
The company aims to increase its export volume, which reached 52,000 tons in the first six months of 2023, marking a 20% increase compared to the previous year, to 130,000 tons by the end of the year. Yıldız remarked, “We continue to expand by adding Dubai and the UK to our list of more than 30 countries to which we export. Especially in markets like East Africa, the Far East, North, and South America, we are working to further increase our export volume.”
INCREASE OBSERVED IN THE 2023 WHEAT HARVEST
Yıldız, reflecting on this year’s wheat harvest season, stated, “From the harvest data we obtained from all over our country, we observed significant increases in yield compared to last year. The harvest season was productive in many agricultural areas, notably the Southeast Anatolia Region-Harran Plain, Central Anatolia, and Thrace. Despite the general drought observed throughout the year, periodic heavy rains played a major role in this yield. According to the National Cereal Council (UHK) Crop Estimate Report, we expect a wheat yield of 21.5 million tons this year. Compared to last year, this figure represents an increase of approximately 10%.”
Discussing the global markets, Yıldız, touching on the grain corridor, said, “The fact that Russia and Ukraine, located in the northern part of the world, are in a position we can call a bread basket area, has greatly hindered the supply of wheat and flour to North African countries, especially with undesired tensions. In this context, Turkey, taking a leadership role, ensured the opening and maintenance of the corridor three times. Currently, there’s a pause in the continuation of the corridor. However, we believe that this corridor will soon be reopened, especially through the mediation of our President. Turkey, producing well above its own needs with an annual average wheat production of 20 million tons over the last five years, meets its own demand. Flours produced under the ‘Inward Processing Regime’, with an average of 70% of wheat coming from Russia, are exported to countries in need through United Nations tenders or our own sales channels. Our country, with its geopolitical position and high-capacity companies, continues to maintain its number one position in global flour exports.”
INVESTMENTS ONGOING WITH 12 SILOS AND RENEWABLE ENERGY
In the first quarter of 2023, following the public offering entirely in the form of a capital increase, 28.63% of Eksun Gıda’s shares began trading on the İstanbul Stock Exchange, Yıldız recalled. Outlining their investment vision, he said, “We operate with a sustainable perspective. We have signed agreements with suppliers for the planned investment of 12 silos, each with a capacity of 90 tons, at our Konya factory, aiming to increase flour storage capacity and support a sustainable quality approach. We’ve also commenced efforts to establish renewable energy plants to meet electricity needs at our flour production facilities in both Tekirdağ and Konya. Within our zero-waste production framework, our R&D center is also undertaking recycling initiatives to use organic waste in areas other than feed, such as fertilizers and packaging.”
IN 60TH YEAR, SİNANGİL CONTINUES INNOVATIONS
Celebrating its 60th anniversary this year, Sinangil continues to introduce new products to its range. Yıldız mentioned, “With our Sinangil brand, we offer a wide variety of flours catering to every need and application. This year, Sinangil Gluten-Free has met a significant demand from those who prefer gluten-free diets by adding new cookie varieties and frozen pizza to its product line.”
INNOVATION IN FLOUR INDUSTRY FLOURISHES IN TEKİRDAĞ
Eksun Gıda, the pioneering name behind the renowned brand Sinangil, graciously opened the doors of its Tekirdağ factory to give us an in-depth understanding of its technology-driven and research-centric endeavors. Having received approval from the Ministry of Industry and Technology in 2020, the R&D center focuses on research-intensive projects. These projects emphasize international competitiveness, contribute to national and international knowledge sources, and prioritize collaborations with universities, industries, and public institutions.
Eksun Gıda’s R&D center spearheads several innovative projects, including the development of gluten-free flour, bread, and baked goods. They also focus on diversifying flour varieties and finding optimal wheat blends to produce high-quality flour. Among the groundbreaking products from the center are gluten-free flour, diabetic flour, probiotic flour, and antioxidant-rich purple flour, all catering to diverse needs.
Furthermore, the R&D team dedicates efforts to formulate flours tailored for the bread varieties demanded by their export markets. A standout innovation is a butter-rich bread, high in nutritional value, specifically designed for Ghana. This bread, which has a prolonged shelf life, was developed to combat malnutrition in the region.
Eksun Gıda is a considerable employer, providing jobs for nearly 500 individuals, both blue and white-collar workers. With factories in Tekirdağ and Konya employing next-generation technologies, the company continues its innovative journey. Keeping diverse consumer habits in mind, they focus on creating products like gluten-free flour and baked goods, all rooted in a philosophy of social benefit.
SİNANGİL HOSTS A MASTERCLASS EVENT WITH PRODUCTS
Sinangil, Turkey’s first packaged flour brand that has been a staple in Turkish culinary culture for 60 years with its 200 different products, partnered with EKS Kitchen Academy for an exclusive masterclass event. The workshop, led by renowned chef Eyüp Kemal Sevinç and attended by Eksim Food Group President and Eksun Gıda General Manager Ahmet Demir, offered journalists the opportunity to learn and practice professional techniques. Participants got hands-on experience in crafting dishes such as sun-dried tomato and olive quiche, chocolate terrine, and buckwheat flour sunflower cookies.