“We lead the field thanks to our production technology and never giving in character”

“Our country has covered a lot of ground at pasta industry. Now we have a voice with Italy and other pasta producing countries in terms of production and raw materials. I think this phenomenon is driven competitiveness and industriousness of Turkish people that never give in. This may be the main underlying factor for our companies’ success. Furthermore, our producers are following ever-growing production technologies closely. When we also consider quality of Turkish wheat, we realize that success is no coincidence. If European Union’s pasta quotas and anti-dumping and countervailing duties were not introduced, Turkey would be the main player in the global pasta market.”

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Muhittin Aykut GÖYMEN

Mutlu Pasta – CEO

Mutlu Pasta, a global player based in Gaziantep, one of the leading industrial Turkish city, is growing rapidly. Mutlu Pasta is leading the field step by step thanks to its investments and has increased its pasta production by 100 percent within the last 5 years. The top 500 Turkish industrial enterprises list of Istanbul Chamber of Industry proves this. Mutlu Pasta is among the top 300 and it exports 80 percent of its products to more than 110 countries.

Mutlu Pasta CEO Muhittin Aykut Göymen gave an interview to the Miller Magazine about Turkish pasta industry and future objectives of his company. He says that with 1150 tons daily pasta production, they are one of the top 2 Turkish companies. Göymen also talked about their new investment in 5th organized industrial site of Gaziantep. He expects this investment to create a great synergy for themselves and the industry as a whole. Göymen also praised Turkish companies for following advancing technology closely.

Here is the answers of Mutlu Pasta CEO Muhittin Aykut Göymen to our questions:

Mr. Göymen, first of all, can you please tell us about history of Mutlu Pasta?
Our father Mustafa Tacettin Göymen left his partnership with “Göymen Kardeşler” and started production with ‘Mutlu’ brand in 1986. He imported machines from Italy in 1987 with latest technology of the day and aimed more quality and mass production. The company started to operate the new factory at 2nd organized industrial site of Gaziantep in 1994 and daily production capacity was 60 tons at the factory which was built on an area of 20 decares. We have continued to invest and now our daily pasta production has hit 100 tons.

Would you please talk about your production plant, capacity and technology you utilize?
In recent years, pasta consumption in Turkey has not grown rapidly yet we observe a slight increase and this trend makes us happy. Turkish pasta sector exports more than the domestic consumption. Turkish pasta exports are approximately 1,05 million tons. Mutlu Pasta is leading the field step by step thanks to its investments and has increased its pasta production by 100 percent within the last 5 years and achieved a daily production of 1150 tons. Mutlu Makarna has become one of the 2 biggest pasta industrialists in terms of production.

How do you evaluate technology and capacity utilization level of your company? What about pasta production technologies and production bands in Turkey?
We always aim and target to utilize %100 of our capacity. Currently, our plant can process 1500 tons of wheat and produce 1000 tons of pasta. I would like to state that our machines have advanced technologies that is above Turkish standards and our production process is fully automatic from wheat to pasta in packages. Yet more, pasta packages are put into parcels with robotic technology. We pay importance to bring innovative technologies to our company. Turkey has an important place at global pasta market and this should be seen as a success without losing the sight for getting to better levels. I think, this success stems from the ability of our pasta producers to integrate their own systems with advancing technologies and innovations. This shows that companies are utilizing production technology and parameters in an appropriate way. And this clearly shows that Turkey has the necessary vision in terms of utilizing the technology and production lines and we are on the right track.

What is the importance of Mutlu Pasta in the world? How big is its market share and sales volume? How many countries do you export? What is the share of exports of your total production?
Thanks to export spurts of the last 10 years, our company is currently shipping pasta to Europe, Asia, Africa, Far East etc. We are exporting to around 110 countries. According to Istanbul Chamber of Industry data, we are among the top 300 companies. We export 80 percent of our production and offer the remaining part to the domestic market.

Do you carry on businesses other than pasta production? If so, would you please give details?
We produce only pasta and semolina.

Would you please tell us a bit about your R&D departments activities? Which innovations have you brought to the industry recently?
Mutlu Pasta pays great importance to R&D and innovation and that is an undeniable fact. We are keen on research and development as technology is rapidly advancing in the world. We always take people’s needs, quality perceptions and economical and demographic factors into consideration and we often make researches and collect data in order to understand those phenomena. We make innovations in terms of products. Pasta is a food that allows to create a rich variety of products. Our production technology is able to meet our customers’ demands in terms of variety and different specialities. We have been investing in our “Makaroma” brand for 2 years. This brand focuses on the upper level pasta class. For example Tortellini – Tagliatelle – Lasagne products which we produce in Italy, attracted much attention. Whole wheat pasta, vegetable pasta products and pasta sauces of Makaroma are also memorable. I recommend our consumers to test Makaroma products. I would like to state that we use prominent wheats for these products. They are also rich in protein.

What differentiates you from your competitors? Why do consumers prefer you?
We always strive to improve Mutlu Pasta with “Respectful to Humankind, Respected in the World” motto. Consumers prefer us for high quality products and because we are a trusted company. Our pasta does not break into parts or stick together thanks to our cutting edge technology and the best quality durum wheat.

What are your targets in terms of plants, technology investments as well as market share and sales volume?
We create monthly, quarterly and yearly plans. Although they are seperated into some main titles, namely raw material, production, storage and sales, I evaluate them as parts of a chain process. Furthermore, now we are working on a new investment at the 5th industrial zone of Gaziantep province. We will operationalize it in November and this will be a major investment for us and pasta industry as a whole. We aim to invest more in our brands in the coming years in order to strengthen Mutlu Pasta which contiunously gains experience with its registered trademarks in Turkey and abroad.

How do you source your raw materials?
It depends on seasons and years. We pay importance to buy Turkish wheat. Of course, we sometimes import wheat at certain periods.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of being located in a hot climate like Southeastern Asia Region of Turkey and being close to the Middle East countries?
I think this is an advantage for us about logistic costs of raw material sourcing. But being close to the market has started to lost its advantage in recent years. Because sales and marketing methods are advancing. Yet Gaziantep and the Southeastern Anatolia Region of Turkey has an effective role in transferring products to the Middle East. There are companies that we have cooperated for many years in the Middle East. We have ties of affection in between. We analyze negative and positive consequences of our location and we see that positive ones outweigh. We have been significantly growing in the Middle East market.

Turkey is a major exporter in the world not only for flour but also for pasta. We can almost compete with Italy, the fatherland of the pasta. What are the underlying reasons of this success?
Indeed, our country has covered a lot of ground at pasta industry. Now, we have a voice with Italy and other pasta producing countries in terms of production and raw materials. I think this phenomenon is driven by the competitiveness and industriousness of Turkish people that never give in. This may be the main factor for our companies’ success. Furthermore, our producers are following ever-growing production technologies closely. When we also consider quality of the Turkish wheat, we realize that the success is no coincidence. If European Unions’s pasta quotas and anti-dumping and countervailing duties were not introduced, Turkey would be the main player in the global pasta market.

Raw material costs have been increasing recently, particularly due to the weakening Turkish currency. What is its impact on your company?
Although people may think that pasta production costs are not related with depreciation of the currency, we are also affected negatively in terms of raw material costs. Packaging, cardboard boxes, electricity and natural gas costs are also affected directly by weakening currency. Fuel costs also have a direct impact on us. So our costs are increasing but we hope that this trend will stop in a certain period of time.

We also suggest you to read our previous article titled "UNESCO discovers Silk Road food processing tech under leadership of Turkish academician".

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