Wood and Forestry Products
Turkey has a total land area of close to 80 million ha. Forests cover 27.2% (21,2 million ha) of the country land area. Turkey has one of the richest floras in the world with 9,000 herbaceous and woody plant species.
The major tree species used for roundwood production are Calabrian pine (Pinus brutia), Crimean pine (Pinus nigra), Scots pine (Pinus silvestris), beech (Fagus orientalis), fir (Abies bornmülleriana/alba/nordmaniana), spruce (Picea orientalis), cedar (Cedrous libani), and oak (Quercus).
Turkey’s large milling and wood manufacturing industry is in a position to supply wood products to regional markets in the Middle East, particularly those countries that lack a wood manufacturing sector sector of their own.
Turkey is also in a competitive position to supply semi-processed wood products and Furniture Exports to the EU as a result of its relatively lower labor costs. Turkish forest product based industries, such as the panel and furniture industries, have increased their capacity over the last decade, allowing them to take advantage of these regional opportunities.
70% of timber manufactured in Turkey is used in construction, 20% is used in furniture production and 10% is used in packaging and other industries. Timber consumption per person is btw 0,075-0,085 m³.
Wood Products Exports
FURNITURE INDUSTRY IN TURKEY
Furniture production in Turkey dates back to the 19th century and was done in small workshops as artisan production. However, by the rapid globalization and all other aspects, present furniture industry is becoming a fashion sector.
In Turkey, furniture is produced both in workshops and industrial-scale manufacturing units. Furniture production is highly fragmented among a large number of small workshops. These small workshops play an important role in producing hand carved and handmade furniture.
Workshops are flexible establishments in nature and have enough capacity and labor force to expand their production line in order to supply large orders. Large-scale Furniture Exports firms produce standard models by using automated mass-production techniques and most of their production is oriented towards export.
In accordance to data from Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat), in 2012 furniture production was realized as 10,3 billion Turkish Liras. According to the recent General Census of Industry and Business Establishments (2012), the furniture sector employs 151.904 people and the industry has 33.924 companies manufacturing various furniture.
Moreover, capacity data of The Union of Chambers of Commerce and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) reports 40 companies who have over 250 employees and 155 companies who have over 100 employees. Besides, Istanbul Chamber of Industries list of the top 500 industrial establishments of Turkey includes six furniture companies.
Furniture production in Turkey is concentrated mainly in Istanbul, Ankara, Bursa (İnegöl), Kayseri, İzmir and Adana. The most important furniture production districts are Istanbul and the region of Bolu-Düzce, which is famous for its production of wood products. The well-known furniture-manufacturing district in Turkey, called “Siteler”, is located in Ankara.
The number of registered small and medium sized enterprises in “Siteler” is over 10,000. In Ankara, there are many labor–intensive small enterprises manufacturing classical-handmade furniture and there are about 10 major furniture manufacturers who have mass-production capabilities.
The wood industry is developing rapidly in the Bursa-İnegöl area, the third most important furniture production region, which is surrounded by forest areas. The furniture industry of the İnegöl area is small sized but has great potential to improve itself.
Another important furniture region is Kayseri, which has large capacity for the production of sofa beds, couch beds and seven of the twenty two largest manufacturers of Turkey are established here. İzmir also has a furniture production districts called “Karabağlar and Kısıkköy” which supply furniture to the Aegean Region.
In Turkey, furniture production can be classified in accordance with materials used as wooden furniture (massive and veneered), metal furniture and others. Wooden furniture has a major share in total furniture production. As it is known for good quality furniture, the types of wood used and plywood inputs have to be taken into consideration.
The main types of wood used in the manufacture of massive furniture in Turkey are ash, beech, oak, pine, linden and mahogany. In veneered furniture, oak, beech, walnut and mahogany are used. Turkish furniture factories use the latest technologies in producing furniture, which is always up to world standards. Since 1990 the application of advanced technology and the use of CNC benches in the Turkish furniture industry have been increasing.
Today, all of the large enterprises in the furniture sector use CNC benches. Most companies are equipped with modern machinery which allows the production of good, export-quality products. Quality control starts from the stage when the raw material is produced and continues till the end of the packaging process.
Most of the companies have already obtained ISO 9000 certificates and other required quality certificates. Different styles are produced such as classical, traditional and contemporary.
The large scale firms comply with world standards in their packaging processes. In packaging PE, PP, foam, poly-urethane and cardboard boxes are used. Many of the large companies have special packaging sections. As with many other consumer products, Furniture Exports and production are sensitive to changes in fashion.
Since furniture design is an important aspect of marketing, Turkish designers are constantly following consumer preferences in foreign markets and introduce new designs and make model variations and improvements.
Turkish furniture manufacturers and exporters are aware of the fact that market trends and consumer behavior play an important role in the development and design of new products. Since Turkey has a strong textile industry, Turkish furniture manufacturers have the advantage of being able to use and to monitor a wide range of colorful new fabric collections as upholstery.
Turkey’s furniture exports have had an upward trend in recent years. In the last ten years, Turkish Furniture Exports increased from US $ 684,5 million in 2005 to US $ 2,2 billion in 2015. This is mainly due to improvements in capacity, quality and design. The export figure for 2014 was US $ 2,4 billion, representing an increase of 8% with respect to the previous year.
On the other hand, the export figure for 2015 was US $ 2,2 billion, representing a decrease of 7% compared to the previous year. Main export products were: wooden furniture for bedrooms (excl. seats) wooden furniture (excl. for offices, kitchens and bedrooms, and seats) and seats for motor vehicles.
In 2015, Turkey exported furniture to 201 countries throughout the world. The main markets for furniture exports were Iraq, Libya, Azerbaijan, Germany, and France. In recent years, Turkish Furniture Exports companies have been establishing showrooms and depots in increasing numbers in most of these countries.
The Turkish contracting sector is one of the major sectors exporting services. Turkish contractor companies who have undertaken construction work abroad have completed many housing complexes, tourism projects, hospitals and health center projects, most of which were decorated with Turkish Furniture Exports.
Turkish furniture is designed and made from the highest quality materials to ensure comfort, performance and attractive appearance for a very long life.
With its designers and architects combined with its flexible production capacity, the Turkish furniture industry is able to satisfy the requirements of all individual markets all over the world. Today, with all these aspects of the furniture industry, Turkey is among the most promising Furniture Exports suppliers in the world.
Table 3: Furniture Exports of Turkey by Years