Sun-dried tomatoes have been exported to Italy, famous for pasta, from Konya. The sun- dried tomatoes are produced during the hottest days of the year with 400 seasonal workers in Ereğli district of Konya over a place of 400 decares of land owned by the company. The procedure starts with the first lights of the day and lasts till the last moments of the evening. 60 thousand tons of tomatoes are brought to the area from Adana and Konya by trucks. With the help of hot temperatures, the drying process lasts for five days. After the process, the 6 thousand tons of sun-dried tomatoes are being sent to the port of İzmir and finally they reach to famous Italian kitchens to be served as pasta sauce.
"Farmers do the hardest job"
Can Sayal, the director of land and agriculture in Ereğli, states that in every hour of the day, trucks come and bring tomatoes to the area to be dried. When tomatoes reach to the area, first they are cut into pieces, then they are dried and lastly they are put into chill stores. Sayal also expressed that "here, farmers do the hardest job. After planting the tomatoes, there is a period of time between 90 to 120 days until they reach to the counters. The planting starts in the first weeks of May and the job continue till the end of August. Meanwhile, the farmers work hard against the bad conditions such as rain, hot or mud in the field. It is really difficult to work under the straight lights of the sun. Here, workers start at 5:30 in the morning and they continue to work until the sunset. They work in shifts and have rest times during the day. Harvest starts at the end of July and continues till the end of September.”