ANKARA, TURKEY — The Association of Milling and Sector Machinery Manufacturers (DESMÜD) plan to build a milling training center in Ankara, Turkey, that will provide theoretical and practical training for mill technologists and operators.

The center would be association-owned and include a laboratory, and production lines for biscuits, pasta, pastry and bakery.

With the support of Ankara’s mayor, land valued at $3.5 million was allocated for a training center of 5,000 square meters, said Zeki Demirtasoglu, president of DESMÜD, during a meeting June 29.

A milling science and technology department will be opened at an English university, following negotiations with a higher education institution. Demirtasoglu said there are only three schools in the world in this field and they want the fourth in Turkey.

In the last four years, Turkey has spent $1.5 billion to expand its storage capacity with 7 million tonnes of new warehouses. The nation now has professional storage capacity of 9 million tonnes, excluding the warehouses of private companies and factories.

Products made in Turkey’s milling sector have an important place in the nation’s exports, Demirtasoglu said. Flour exports bring $1.1 billion to $1.2 billion to Turkey and $500 million to $600 million more comes from exporting high value-added products.

The nation is second in pasta exports with a volume of $1.2 billion. Turkey produces a wide range of products, including flour and bread as well as milk and dairy products, meat and cheese. Food safety and sustainability issues have become more important since the pandemic, Demirtasoglu said, and the milling sector is the primary actor in those areas.

DESMÜD is again planning an international symposium in Antalya either this November or February or April of next year.