Doğan Organic Products attended the European CSR Awards Best Practice Exchange Forum, held by Business in the Community (BITC), an organization established by the British Business World for the purpose of furthering corporate responsibility. BITC’s objective in holding the Forum was to gather detailed information on the successful projects recognized by the European Corporate Social Responsibility Awards program... Speaking on behalf of Doğan Organic Products, the Forum’s sole Turkish participant, Doğan Group of Companies Corporate Communications Director Rişe Özkan related the details of Doğan Organic Products’ success story to a crowd of corporate social responsibility experts and business world representatives.
Ms. Özkan said the following:
“This Forum is held so that award-winning projects from the European Corporate Social Responsibility Awards Program may inspire and encourage other companies to implement similar projects. We are here today as one of the six projects that BITC selected from among 60 projects spanning 30 countries. We are indeed proud of the fact that the successful fruition of a project initiated in 2002 by our Honorary Chairman, Aydın Doğan, to ensure the sustainable development of Kelkit, his hometown, and its surrounding area, is confirmed today by various organizations, and we certainly hope this project will inspire others as well.”
The Forum brought together projects from different business sectors and countries in order to inspire and deliver practical insights. Among the attendees were professionals from companies such as 3M, IBM, KPMG, The Body Shop, Rolls-Royce, Hilton, Capital One, UBS, Visa, Samsung and Hitachi.
Established in 2002 with the objective of transforming Kelkit and its surrounding area into a center for organic dairy and livestock farming, Doğan Organic Products has since provided jobs for approximately 100 employees at its Kelkit Organic Dairy Farming Operations, as well as 100 contract farmer families in the region. Of these 100 farmer families, 80 are raising crops while 20 are involved in livestock farming. As Turkey’s he largest organic milk producer, Doğan Organic Products produces close to 10,000 tons of milk annually from a total of 2,900 certified organic cows, 1,400 of which are under the care of Kelkit Organic Dairy Farming Operations, with the remaining 1,500 raised and maintained by the contract farmers.
Prior to 2002, Kelkit’s younger population was migrating to large cities due to truly challenging geographical conditions and outdated productionhabits. Through organic production commenced by Kelkit Organic Dairy Farming Operations, and the eventual inclusion of area residents as contract farmers, the migration problem was solved, the area prospered, and the region’s residents were integrated into the national economy. Today,
organic livestock farming has spread from Kelkit into eastern Anatolia, and reliable, high-quality organic animal products are produced for Turkish consumers via now-fertile lands that will be passed on with pride to future generations.