Livestock farming in Hakkari hit by economic crisis

In the Kurdish province of Hakkari, a large part of the population lives from livestock farming. Many people in the villages collect grass from the mountain pastures in the summer to turn it into hay and feed it to their animals in winter.

Most people in Hakkari (Colemêrg) earn their living through livestock farming. 300,000 people live in the province on the border with Iraq and Iran. Winters in the mountain region are harsh and farmers have already started preparing for the cold season.

In the village of Xenanis, ten kilometers from the provincial capital, people collect herbs and grasses in spring and summer. The plants on the high mountain pastures are picked by hand using traditional equipment. The harvest is later brought to the village by horses, mules and sometimes tractors and laid out to dry. In autumn, the dried grass is processed into hay with a shredder to feed the animals in winter.

Farmer Renas İhtiyatoğlu from Xenanis said that the prices of hay and straw have risen sharply during the economic crisis in Turkey: “To mitigate the effects of the economic crisis, we collect grass ourselves and bring it to the village by horse and tractor. At one point in the village, the harvest is stacked on top of each other. In the fall we make hay out of it. To do this, we bring a chipper to the village, which everyone here uses to process hay. In winter we feed the hay to our animals.”