Alhatoğlu Olive Oils in Akhisar is one of Turkey’s most important companies in its sector. We had an interview with Mustafa Alhat about the company, which has a long history and wide range and experience of exportation.
Would you briefly mention your company and your product range?
We established Alhatoğlu Olive Oil Company in 1998 with my brother Alper Alhat as the sons of the Late Hüseyin Alhat, who played a major role in Akhisar’s being an olive city. We focus on packaged olive oil contrary to general manner in Akhisar. In 2011 we initialized our modern and high-capacity olive oil plant. With technology and automation investments, we are proud to be able to offer olive oil at competitive prices and to be competitive in the challenging foreign market with packages of one liter and under, as well as being accessible to domestic consumers.
To tell about our product range; olive we have riviera olive oil for beginners, extra virgin olive oil for strong flavor in salads and meals, a special olive oil for those who are looking for a gourmet flavor with high burning grease and “Kids Olio” which is a special olive oil for kids.
Olive oil for children… Sounds interesting. Could you talk a little bit about that?
If you rip off the olive fruit before it matures enough, it will leave a bitter taste in your mouth. This burning flavor of early harvested oils is surely a unique pleasure for adult gourmets. However, high polyphenol acids may not be suitable for children as they can cause allergic reactions. That’s why we produced Kids Olio, a delicate and soft flavor for children. In the production of Kids Olio, we prefer table olive varieties in which polyphenol level is naturally low. We offer Kids Olio, which is made from olives harvested “just in time” and carefully handled in special packages with cute olive characters.
What is your export volume? To which countries do you export?
Alhatoğlu has an innovative and self-improving production. This difference is reflected in our export. Russia, Kazakhstan, Belarus, the United States, Germany, China, the Turkic Republics, Japan and even Mongolia are among our export destinations.
What do you say if we ask a brief assessment of olive and olive oil sector for Turkey in 2017?
In 2017, we had a season with pretty good production in Turkey. From now on, the future is clear and everything seems to be going well. Of course, there are issues that we need to take as a sector outside this pink frame. For example, per capita consumption of olive oil in Turkey still does not exceed 2 kilograms annually. We want our high-quality olives and olive oils to be consumed domestically too.
What are the prominent features of olive and olive oil being produced in Akhisar region?
In fact, we can say definetely say that Akhisar is Turkey’s leading olive and olive oil region with 448 thousand square meters of production field. We produce 70 percent of the table olives of Turkey in Akhisar. We have the presence of thousand-year-old olive trees. In Akhisar, we increased the olive tree number to 13 million. Domat, Edremit, Gemlik Trilye and Uslu genres are being produced. We also produce high quality products in olive oil segment too.
What are your expectations and plans for the year 2018?
For 2018, one main thing lies at the center of our sectoral goals: It is to widen the usage of olive and olive oil, which is the source of health and healing for our future. This is not only the aim of Alhatoglu, but also the goal of all our producers. It is our common goal to announce more of Akhisar’s name in global venues by producing our goods with added value and branded.