Newspaper September 9
As you see and read every morning, there are many people who throw so much wood under the “cauldron of politics”; I thought we should not add to these. İsterseniz bugün de benim “Dostlar Vitrinime” iki güzel insan daha ekleyeyim. As you know last week, I was invited to “World Olive Day” in Akhisar. I shared what I saw with you… I spoke with two members of the Alhat family in Akhisar who preferred olives after tobacco. Brothers Alper and Mustafa Alhat are among those who supply the God’s gift of olives and oil to the world markets.
Mustafa Alhat, one of the lasting friends, was born in 1972, graduated from primary and secondary school in Akhisar and high school in Manisa Beydere Vocational High School and gained “professional depth” in the plant protection department of Ege University Faculty of Agriculture. In 1998, he and his brother Alper established the Alhatoğlu Olive Company. While their initial purpose was to market table olives, they saw a gap in the olive oil business and specialized in that branch. I got to know them both during their volunteer works for social institutions. Describing this work as the zakat of knowledge, Mustafa Alhat is also one of the founders of the Olive Friendly Association and a member of the Honorary Board. Currently, his brother Alper Alhat is successfully running the Akhisar Stock Exchange Presidency.
Their father, the late Hüseyin Alhat, is one of the leading players in Akhisar’s transition from tobacco to olive. In fact, he is known as one of the first to plant black olive saplings, as well as growing and selling saplings to other farmers, and salting and marketing their fruits. Frankly, it is possible to describe Hüseyin Alhat as the “architect of the expanding olive economy” of the region. Mustafa Alhat worked in his father’s olive groves while he was at university, and did not know that a city would change its destiny when he started delivering oil to TARIS, with which they were a business partner.
He is surprised to see that a category known as “Extra Virgin”, which he had never heard of until then, would be sold for double. He asks how it is produced and when he is told that it can only be produced in Ayvalık and Edremit, he gets frustrated but still follows up. Since the factory that will produce clean oil is not in Akhisar at that time, Hüseyin Alhat makes an appointment with Edremit Tariş and runs the clean product there and issues a clean report for its oil. However, despite this stubborn pursuit, Akhisar reaches this goal only 15 years later. Alhats don’t give up, Alper attends domestic and foreign fairs… Of course, all of my friends from Akhisar enjoy the benefits of being the regulars of these fairs, as well as gaining the ability to make their voices heard by organizing Olive Harvest festivals every year. It’s a long story… Alhat brothers, who are now on the same podium with the country’s giant companies, say that their goal is to help Turkish olive oil reach the position that it deserves worldwide. Alhat brothers are also one of those who pray the most for Akhisarspor to become a brand just like the branding in olives.