Introducing the Turkish Guild of Agricultural Journalists (TGAJ)

IFAJ Vice President Lena Johansson interviewed the Executive representative for one of IFAJ’s newest members, Turkey.

Who are you?

I am Ismail Ugural, president of the Turkish Guild of Agricultural Journalists, TGAJ. I am actually an economist with a Master’s Degree in Money and Banking. I have been producing TV programmes and writing a column about food and agriculture since 1999.

What is the name of your guild?

Our name is the Turkish Guild of Agricultural Journalists (TGAJ).

How many members do you have?

We have 76 members throughout Turkey.

What are the big issues for agricultural journalism in your country?

The biggest issues for agricultural journalism in Turkey are the deficiency of expertise in agricultural media, though we’ve been supporting the young journalists for a few years. There are lots of agricultural magazines and internet portals however there are no international ones. We need to follow global developments and learn what’s going on in terms of global agriculture and agri-business.

Lack of foreign language skills is another problem. Unfortunately very few speak English among the agricultural journalists in Turkey, but at least with the increase in the younger generation, they know at least one foreign language.

Why did your guild become a member of IFAJ?

We became a member of IFAJ because we were determined to be an active part of global agricultural journalism. Personally I find it very important. Furthermore, Turkey should integrate with the world much more than it used to do. Besides, we consider that our guild can play a role of a strong bridge in order to tell the whole world about the agriculture and food sector of Turkey. That’s why we’ve decided to join IFAJ. Our guild really takes great honour and feels much more confident by doing this.

How long has Turkey been a member of IFAJ?

We’ve been a member of IFAJ since 2015.

What is your biggest dream right now?

I have three big dreams for the next four years; to organize a Middle East Ag Journalists’ Summit, an IFAJ executive meeting and finally an IFAJ World Congress in Turkey.

Ismail Ugural, president of the Turkish Guild of Agricultural Journalists, TGAJ

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IFAJ Vice President Lena Johansson interviewed the Executive representative for one of IFAJ’s newest members, Turkey.