SHEFFIELD, Iowa – Sukup Manufacturing Co. President Charles Sukup was among the delegation of 17 business leaders on a U.S. Department of Agriculture trade mission to Turkey in June.
The group visited historic Istanbul and met with government and business leaders in the rapidly developing country. The economy of Turkey, a country of nearly 75 million that links Europe with the Middle East, has nearly tripled in the past 10 years, reaching $750 billion a year, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce.
“We met with a dozen companies,” Sukup said, including prospective customers and partners, and toured historically and culturally significant sites.
“Overall, it was very impressive how Turkey is growing so strong,” said Sukup. The company has sold grain handling equipment there in the past and would like to do more business in Turkey as the country’s economic expansion continues, he said.
Turkey is seeking to join the European Union, which could further bolster its economy, Sukup said. If current trends continue, Turkey would become the most populous country in the EU. Germany, which is currently the most populous member country, has about 81.5 million people.
The historic Turkish city of Istanbul’s population has grown 10-fold since the 1950s. At nearly 14 million, it is the second-largest city in the world by population within city limits.
The delegation from Iowa included Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey; Alan Hagie of Hagie Manufacturing, Clarion; and Greg Van Sickle of Tri-States Grain Conditioning, Spirit Lake. There were also representatives from Minnesota, Sukup Manufacturing Co., [1555 255th St., Sheffield IA USA, 50475; (641) 892-4222], Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota and Pennsylvania. The companies represented on the trade mission produce a wide variety of products including food products and agricultural equipment.
Sukup was joined on the trade mission by son Jonathan, an agricultural engineering major at Iowa State University who is concurrently working on a master’s degree in business administration; and daughter Elizabeth, an ISU graduate who majored in public service and administration in agriculture, and in international agriculture. She is currently enrolled at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London.
Sukup Manufacturing Co. is a family-owned business that is the fastest-growing bin manufacturer in the world. Its product line includes farm and commercial grain bins, portable and tower dryers, centrifugal and axial fans and heaters, stirring machines, bin unloading equipment and bin floors and supports.
Sukup also makes a line of material handling equipment that includes bucket elevators, drag conveyors and chain loop conveyors, and manufactures custom-designed ag and industrial buildings under the name Sukup Steel Buildings. Sukup products are sold throughout the U.S. and Canada, and are in more than 70 other countries.
[From original press release]