May 16, 2011
Some 200 delegates from 30 countries participated in the WUWM 27th Congress held in Istanbul, Turkey from 10-13 May 2011. The WUWM Declaration resulting from this congress can be found here below. Copies of speech presentations and meeting documentation is also available to members and conference delegates via the member-only section of this WUWM website.
10-13 May 2011
On the occasion of the 27th World Union of Wholesale Markets (WUWM) Congress held in Istanbul, Turkey under the theme: "Globalising wholesale markets: ensuring demand and supply between east and west", delegates from 30 countries gather here today to express unanimous agreement of the following:
- The supply of food to cities faces increasing new challenges in logistical processes impacted by issues such as the price of energy, environmental concerns and maintenance of quality standards. These changes require re-examination of the organisation of the production process as well as adaptation of the market to address the escalating need presented by the increasing challenges presented by urban logistical issues.
- In facing these challenges, wholesale market management has a role to play in supporting urban planners and the development of cities, including the introduction of improvements to the supply of produce into the market and its distribution out of the market. Opportunities exist for markets and city planners to jointly explore more efficient and effective use of rail, road and sea transportation systems.
- We confirm that wholesale markets are continuing to play an essential role in the food supply chain. As a result of this congress we note that, globally, many wholesale markets are being upgraded and modernised to embrace evolving hygiene standards and regulations. They are increasingly being logistically aligned with their surrounding areas, with emphasis on the incorporation of high-tech design and environmental compliance.
- Food hygiene and certification are increasingly important to the markets sector. WUWM member markets face challenges that benefit from shared exchange of experience at an expert level. The impact of developing legislation related to consumer food safety and hygiene requires that specific certification standards be established for wholesale markets. WUWM shall continue to develop this certification process based on its Guide to Good Hygienic Practice for Wholesale Market Managers in the European Union (adopted as a Community Guide by the European Commission in December 2009).
- There are 203 fruit and vegetable wholesale markets in Turkey providing 9,864 jobs. Additionally, in Istanbul alone some 358 district bazaars (street retail markets) employ 35,000 people. These important clients of the wholesale markets are crucial distributors of fresh fruit and vegetables to Turkish consumers. Traditional retailers remain the main customer of the wholesale markets in Turkey, as in many countries. However super and hyper markets are increasingly buying from these markets, and this trend is likely to develop further in coming years. It is therefore important that wholesale markets continue to consider the diversity of their customer base and their corresponding strengths and challenges - developing services supportive to the needs of them all, both present and future;
- Turkey is uniquely placed to support and facilitate east to west trade collaboration and partnership. Through working in partnership within the WUWM network, Turkish markets aim to maximise reciprocal trading opportunities to the benefit of the food supply chain.
- In order to improve standards, share best practice, and increase trade potential for national agricultural markets, Istanbul Metropolitan Municipal Market commits to:
. Establishing a national wholesale market managers association under the Turkish Municipalities Union;
. Exploring opportunities that forge stronger links with wholesale markets exhibiting best practice internationally;
. Exploring benefits that arise from the introduction of new models of development and market management that arise from working in partnership with the private sector;
. Developing and introducing initiatives to improve national logistics and packaging issues to better support sustainability and environmental needs;
. Introducing the WUWM Guide to Good Hygienic Practice to market management bodies throughout Turkey in order that they may ensure their compliance with both national and European Union hygiene and food safety regulations;
. Developing a Middle East/North Africa (MENA) working group within WUWM that supports an effective exchange of information, experience and best practice that is of benefit to all markets within the WUWM membership;
. Clarifying the agricultural production regulations applicable to wholesale markets to ensure that no barriers exist to the import and export of national produce;
. Developing and initiating an awareness and educational programme for all those involved in the wholesale market food supply and distribution chain.
In closing, we take this opportunity to thank the City of Istanbul and the Istanbul Municipal Wholesale Market for their excellent hosting of this WUWM Conference, offering them our congratulations on the successful outcomes resulting from this important event.