Open a Company in the Aquaculture Sector in Turkey

Open a Company in the Aquaculture Sector in Turkey

Establish a Company in the Aquaculture Sector in Turkey

The aquaculture sector in Turkey has been one of the lead contributors to the country’s economy for the past two decades. Employing approximately 25,000 people, the aquaculture sector in Turkey is growing steadily for the past two decades to further offer a realistic and promising projected growth of exports revenue to $1 billion by 2023.[1]

If you’ve been wanting to reap the benefits of investing in the aquaculture sector in Turkey, this guide helps you learn more about the industry as well as provides you with details regarding how you can establish your own company in Turkey. Read further to learn about the various requirements and the different types of aquaculture methods that helped Turkey become a leader in Europe’s marine industry.

Why Open A Company in the Aquaculture Sector in Turkey?

Turkey has the 2nd longest coastline in the Mediterranean of 8,333 meters makes it an excellent location for practicing aquaculture farming. The Aquaculture Sector in Turkey is also supported by five government research institutes and four university marine science institutes, which collectively ordain innovative technological advancements that are utilized by companies to grow their business.[2]

Turkey currently ranks first in large-scale trout production in all of Europe with the existence of more than 434 operational marine aquaculture facilities in various locations that also produce gilthead seabream and European seabass. The production of the latter two species in massive quantities has made Turkey enjoy being the world’s top producer that fulfills 40% of the global demand.[3]

Furthermore, the aquaculture sector in Turkey also produces Sturgeon, Black sea trout, Trout spp., Eel, Red sea bream, Common dentex, White grouper, Sharp-snout, White sea bream, etc. in its total of 20 hatcheries, 23 feed plants, and over 200 seafood processing facilities.[4]

Types of Productions in the Aquaculture Sector in Turkey

The Turkish aquaculture exports generated $414 million in revenue in 2010 with 152,864 metric tonnes, which grew to gain $972 million in 2017 with 273,400 tonnes. This was made possible by utilizing multiple aquaculture farming methods that make Turkey one of the major exporters in Europe and the rest of the world to date.

Following are the two primary production methods used in the aquaculture sector in Turkey:

Marine Aquaculture Sector in Turkey

This type of aquaculture production involves performing fish farming in oceans, estuaries, net pens in the water, and so on to grow species like sea bass, sea bream, trout, etc. It also allows for the intensive production of shellfish on the seafloor or in the floating cages. These are supported by the existence of recirculation systems that additionally produces turbot and other species.

The marine fish farming methods supplied an output of 89,153 tonnes in 2010, which more than doubled to make 206,514 tonnes in 2018. Considering these facts, it is understandable that the marine fish farming method is crucial to the industry and only expected to grow remarkably in the upcoming years.

Freshwater Aquaculture Sector in Turkey

The freshwater production system primarily utilizes ponds or other artifact systems to grow species such as catfish and trout mainly. While the semi-intensive production performed in earthen ponds and artificial lakes allow sea bass, sea bream, carp, turbot, and large trout to grow, Intensive production rather requires the utilization of raceways, fiberglass tanks, concrete ponds, and also net cages in dam lakes and reservoirs.

The generated output from freshwater farming oversaw the production of 78,156 tonnes in 2010 which then grew multifold to 105,167 tonnes in 2018. Therefore, freshwater farming also actively plays a crucial role in the increase of the total net yield and exports of the aquaculture industry.

How to Open a Company in the Aquaculture Sector in Turkey?

The aquaculture sector in Turkey offers various opportunities for global investors who choose to invest in its market by setting up a new business. The legislation process is simple and supported by several laws and regulations governed directly by the Directorate General for Fisheries and Aquaculture (DGFA) subordinated to The Turkish Ministry for Food Agriculture and Livestock.

Procedure to Open a Company in the Aquaculture Sector in Turkey

To start a company in the Aquaculture sector in Turkey, you must own a fish farming license. It allows various types of aquaculture activities besides the production of fish all but creating fishing hatcheries, performing organic fish farming activities, and much more. This license is valid for 12 months after which it can be renewed and, it can be obtained by following these steps to register your company properly:

  • Reserve a company name with the public notary,
  • Register your aquaculture company with the Trade Register of Turkey,
  • Open a company bank account in Turkey and deposit the specific share capital,
  • Apply for TAX & VAT number,
  • Register with the health insurance and pension authorities,
  • Apply to DGFA for a fish farming permit with accurate information regarding your company,


The following information is required while applying for the fish farming permit:

  • Fish farm’s location, management structure, and characteristics,
  • The company’s project information includes the capacity of the farm,
  • Information regarding the source of water, species produced, etc,


You can visit the DGFA website and the Turkish Trade Registry website to understand better the detailed procedure of opening an aquaculture company.

Final Words and Conclusions on; “Open a Company in the Aquaculture Sector in Turkey”

Investing in the aquaculture sector in Turkey can pay off nicely after establishing your own fish farming company at a location that can more than adequately serve your business well for several years. Your investment can further earn you different types of benefits such as specific tax write-offs, subsidized resources cost, export-import trade advantages, Turkish citizenship, etc. To obtain benefits by investing in the aquaculture sector in Turkey, it’s ideal for you to hire an experienced legal professional in Turkey to assist you diligently with the whole registration process.

  1. Calkaya, M. (2021, April 27). Turkey’s aquaculture exports exceed $1B in 2020. AA.
  2. Coban, D., Demircan, M.D., Tosun, D.D. (Eds.) 2020. Marine Aquaculture in Turkey: Advancements and Management. Turkish Marine Research Foundation (TUDAV) Publication No: 59, Istanbul, Turkey, 430p.
  3. Akbulut, D . (2004). Aquaculture In The Turkey. Aquaculture Studies, 2004 (4), 0-0. Retrieved from
  4. CANDAN, A., KARATAS, S., KUCUKTAS, H., OKUMUS, I. (Eds.), 2007. “Marine Aquaculture in Turkey” Turkish Marine Research Foundation. Istanbul TURKEY. <>

This article was published on 01.01.2021 and last edited on 02.07.2021. Images used in this article have been taken from free image-sharing services on the internet. Also, in this article, which is called; “Open a Company in the Aquaculture Sector in Turkey,” information freely shared on the internet was used, and necessary references were given in the article. We make every effort to offer accurate and current information. However, please do let us know if you find any errors in this article.