Employing farmers in the production of dehydrated fruit products in Turkey
Turkish based Taze&Kuru Inc. has been active in the food industry and retailing as an innovator in promoting healthy food options. The company has drawn upon ancient methods of preservation and pioneered a unique renewable-energy-powered food drying process which produces healthy snacks that are free from preservatives, coloring and all additives. This patented indoor system protects foods from the negative externalities of sunlight, dust and other harmful elements during the drying process so that aflatoxin formation and contamination, the main hygiene problem of food drying industry, are prevented. As a result fruit and vegetables retain their real flavors and high nutritional value for 12 to 18 months.
As part of their commitment to the Business Call to Action (BCtA), Taze&Kuru Inc. will integrate 100 small-scale Turkish farmers to support local production. The company has also pledged to establish more production facilities in Turkey by 2018, employing primarily women in several locations where the available geothermal resources will be used to dry, fruits, and vegetables.
As part of its overall mission, the company is also working to change perceptions about nutrition and environmentally sound techniques to dry fruits and vegetables. In an effort to support small-scale farmers, and as part of Taze&Kuru Inc.s BCtA initiative, the company is planning to integrate hundreds of small scale farmers and help them produce according to E.U. production standards.
The company has been successful in reaching low-income populations who traditionally do not have access to the various farming methods and equipment, including drying and food storage techniques that may prolong vegetable production and harvest yields. In an effort to provide more employment opportunities for women in its geothermal production efforts, the company plans to promote the inclusion of underserved farmers in the company's value chain and its facilities in less developed provinces.
Through its specialized employee training for small scale farmers, Taze&Kuru Inc. hopes to improve the livelihood of local communities and expand its distribution to support an estimated 17 new retail chains in Turkey and in Europe by 2015.