Sourcing Furniture from Turkey is an alternate option for those companies currently purchasing from the more common Asian supply base.
Sourcing furniture from Turkey is an untapped opportunity for many businesses. Furniture plays a vital role in our lives as it essentially turns a house into a home giving us a space for comfort and relaxation. Varying in shapes and sizes, furniture takes up most spaces in our homes, helping us have a healthier and more organized lifestyle. These days, people tend to spend a lot of time and money to find furniture that adds charm, class, style, and function to their homes or offices, which leads to furniture becoming a huge sector; globally in dollar terms it was $547 Billion in 2020 and is and is expected to grow a further 44% by 2027 to $789 Billion.
When looking for overseas manufacturers of furniture, the two most common countries would be China and Vietnam. Both have the raw material and the labour pool to produce furniture across a wide range of styles and with different materials. It is no surprise, therefore, that they take the number one and two spots on the list of the largest furniture manufacturers/exporters globally (China and Vietnam respectively).
Covid has significantly disrupted both these Asian markets due to the related shortages of containers and the subsequent upward pressures on freight rates. This has been no more profoundly felt than in the furniture sector when buyers are often trying to cram as many bulky items as possible into containers. When you are only able to get 40 items in a container (compared with 10,000 pieces), the cost implications of the high freight costs will have a tangible impact on your landed price. The result is that buyers are scouring other markets for furniture opportunities particularly where there are freight savings from ‘near-sourcing’ countries.
Lucky Number 13
Casting one’s eye down the list of furniture manufacturers/exporters, Turkey makes the cut at 13th. Is sourcing furniture from Turkey a viable option for you? There are many reasons and we have set some of these out below:
The Turks have been producing furniture for centuries. There are examples of furniture that date back to the Hittites in the Anatolian region. As with many ancient civilisations, the skills and workmanship were passed from generation to generation via family-owned workshops. These workshops, which are still active today, have been producing hand-carved furniture the same way for generations. This expertise was built upon in the dawn of industrialization as mid to large scale production capabilities were developed. These large-scale factories enabled automated mass production of standardized products with the majority of output destined for export.
2. Raw Material
Turkey has access to a range of raw materials that either grow domestically or are produced locally (such as steel etc). Particularly with regards to wood, there is a broad abundance of local wood that can be used in furniture production providing a range of different physical characteristics. The total land area of Turkey is more than 80 million hectares, with forests making up 27.2 percent (21,2 million hectares) of that. With 9,000 herbaceous and woody plant species, Turkey possesses one of the world’s most diverse floras. This gives the country easy access to many trees for roundwood production such as Calabrian pine, Crimean pine, Scots pine, beech, fir, spruce, cedar, and oak.
3. Established Industry
Turkey’s milling and wood manufacturing industry is qualified to supply wood products to overseas markets, especially those countries that do not have an advanced wood fabricating segment. Besides, Turkey is in a favourable position to provide semi-processed wooden items and furniture to the EU owing to its flexibility, comparatively lower labour costs and design capability.
4. Export Track Record
Turkey exports to over 170 countries and the biggest importers of Turkish furniture are Germany, Saudi Arabia, USA, France, UK, Israel, the Netherlands, Qatar, Romania, United Arab Emirates, the Czech Republic, Italy, and Azerbaijan. Moreover, many of the manufacturers have reinvested in their capabilities during the pandemic.
5. Not Asia
In order to build ‘flex’ into any supply chain it is important to identify suppliers in different markets. With Turkey sitting on the edge of Europe, it is perfectly positioned as a near sourcing option when it comes to furniture.
Supply chains and sourcing strategies have been largely turned on their head over the course of this Pandemic. Buyers are looking for other opportunities outside of the more traditional sourcing jurisdictions, like China. Sourcing furniture from Turkey will only enhance your sourcing strategy and breadth of the sourcing market. This is especially important if you are a European business.
As ET2C, we are well placed to provide you with the best furniture products Turkey has to offer. For all enquiries, please contact us at email@example.com.