CBAT’s 20th Founding Anniversary Reception and Traditional Painting and Poem Contest Award Ceremony Held
A reception was organized on 30 January 2018 at Bilkent Hotel and Conference Center on the occasion of 20th founding anniversary of Cattle Breeders’ Association of Turkey (CBAT). Within the scope of founding anniversary, painting and poem contests award ceremony was also held, which became traditional within the scope of social responsibility project aimed at farmers’ children. As the Ministry has declared 2018 as “Prevention of Contagious Diseases and Calf Year, this year’s painting and poem contest was held with the theme of “Calf and Child”.
The program was honored with the participation of the Minister of Food, Agriculture and Livestock Dr. Ahmet Eşref FAKIBABA; among the attendees were previous ministers, members of the parliament, Mr. Reşat PETEK, Mr. Bayram ÖZÇELİK, Mr. Mehmet GÖKER and previous period member of the parliament Mr. Ramazan Kerim ÖZKAN, FAAH officials, representatives of non-governmental organizations, breeders, children participating the contest and their families, Presidents and Board Members of Cattle Breeders’ Associations. 20th founding anniversary reception and painting-poem contest award ceremony began with the opening speech of CBAT President Kamil ÖZCAN. He began his speech with the following:
“As known, Turkish Armed Forces are bravely struggling against terror centers beyond the borders for the survival of our country, peace and tranquility of the region. I wish the mercy of God upon those who were martyred for the motherland and I wish condolence for their relatives, Turkish Armed Forces and our nation. I also wish immediate recovery for our wounded soldiers and I wish from God the Almighty to make our brave army victorious.
We have the honor and happiness of leaving 20 years behind on this road which we have set out to serve the animal production of Turkey. In the office allocated by the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock where we started to work in 1998 we began cattle breeding improvement work with 58 thousands head of registered cattle, of which 22 thousand heads were cows, in 16 provinces.
Today we are serving almost one million breeders over Turkey with a structure organized in 81 provinces, approximately 1600 employees and 950 site service vehicles. In this context, we are following up the breeding and productivity records of a total of 13 million heads of cattle, 4.5 million of which are cows, with the Herd Book and Pre-Herd Book projects we are jointly implementing with the Ministry.
Thanks to the breeding improvement works we have been implementing with the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock for 19 years, the milk production of 7.5 million tons in 1999 has reached 18.6 million tons today and the red meat production of 400 thousand tons in the same year has reached today 1 million 170 thousand tons. Furthermore, high quality breeding heifers of Holstein-Fresian, which the fruit of breeding improvement works, are being exported to the international market, especially to Turkic Republics.
In addition to its national activities, CBAT successfully represents our breeders outside Turkey in the international arena as well, through the organizations it has membership with.
The scope of the breeding improvement works is being renewed and developed every day according to the requirements of the day. In this context, herd books are no longer kept on paper, but they have now a technologic infrastructure allowing the use of cell phones and tablets for collecting data directly from the animals.
For the purpose of increasing high quality milk production, establishing raw milk analysis laboratories in 8 provinces with the Province Associations’ own resources has been an unprecedented event.
In addition to this, work in under way for establishing feeding performance test center within the scope of improvement efforts aimed at increasing the meat production.
CBAT has started the Cattle Genomic Selection Project mutually with the Ministry for the first time in Livestock history of Turkey.
With the completion of this project, breeding selection in cattle will be made at the age of calf. We expect this project to make a significant contribution to the genetic quality improvement rate in our cattle.
I would like to wrap up my speech here by thanking the honorable Minister, members of the parliament, presidents of non-governmental organizations and their representatives, President of Associations, my dear breeder brothers and all the distinguished guests for showing the kindness of allocating time to be with us. I would like to extend my thanks and appreciation to everyone who contributed with their efforts on behalf of the CBAT and myself”.
After the speech of president ÖZCAN, Minister of Food Agriculture and Livestock Dr. Ahmet Eşref FAKIBABA made a speech of his own. Minister FAKIBABA said: “Since the day I took office I have always said mother, mother, mother. Mother is indispensible. Just a minute ago mister president explained; it happens thanks to your efforts, I congratulate all of you. If it were not for you, our imports would be much higher. You are the ones who decreased it and we will decrease it with you, again. Believe it with your hearts. We will implement our projects from now on, if God permits. Dear friends, we need 1 million heifers on the average to prevent meat importation according to the studies we made with our colleague and also with non-governmental organizations. I made the programs for this. We will do it together with you, we will breed together with you and our government provides very great support to you especially on this subject.
Our plan is a 3-year plan. When we look at the loans of Ziraat Bank, it is the first time that a 3-year loan decision was declared. I believe that we will make 500 thousand heifers our country’s by 30 June 2019. We will give you loans with zero subsidy up to 100 thousand liras with the cooperation of Ziraat Bank, Agriculture Credit Cooperatives and FAAH Ministry. 80 percent of it will be for heifer, 20 percent will be for fodder. If the applicants say 90 percent heifer instead of 80 percent, then 10 percent will be for fodder. But if he says I have a large meadow and a lot of fodder, then 100 percent of 100 thousand liras can be used for heifers. We will provide 400 thousand heifers of the total 500 thousand this way. For the remaining 100 thousand; TİGEM (General Directorate Of Agricultural Enterprises) has 45 thousand heifers and we will provide the 55 thousand from the inside. Then, TİGEM’s work will not be finished yet. As you know, we declared this year as calf year. How many claves you may have, in order to decrease the calf death rates, we are ready to take your calves and raise them for you whenever you want. Depending on which day you give the calf; of course our ministry gives support up to 750 liras per calf. If I were to benefit from the supports I would give it after the 4th month. I gave the necessary instructions and we are now ready on this subject. We will own up the calves altogether. That is, we need to make an excellent cooperation on this subject. I have always seen you as a family since the beginning and we will manage it together. We have done many good things and we will continue to do so. You are providing very important services for Turkey. We will produce and work night and day.
Look, our children wrote such beautiful poems, I congratulate them. They produced excellent poems, excellent paintings with their excellent minds. They embroidered their dreams there. We will make it true by working, too. While our soldiers are struggling with terror in Afrin and in other places we will give hand to hand with our children and grandchildren for their future and we will become Turkey together. While they fight a war, we will struggle to produce for our country.
Child and calf are really angels. That is how I look at them; angels. When you look at these poems and paintings you see that children are angels, too. We look at calves, we see that they are angels, too. In this context, I congratulate all people who serve the angels. I congratulate all of you, thank you”.
After his speech Minister FAKIBABA presented Ramazan Korkmaz his awards, who came first in Turkey in poem contest in age 7-9 category.
After the winner children are presented their awards, the program was concluded with the exhibition of the winners’ paintings and poems. In the contest, first ranking contestants were given laptop computers, second were given tablets and thirds were given cameras.
Also, within the scope of the Painting and Poem Contest, a trip was made to Ankara for 2 days with the children of the families who participated in the contest from all over Turkey and won a high rank. On the first day of the program, Turkey Grand National Assembly and Anatolian Civilizations Museum were visited. On the second day, president of the 81 province associations, contestant children and their families visited the Anıtkabir and left a wreath. Then, the first TBMM, second TBMM and Natural History Museum were visited.