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Dried Figs from Aegean Region of Turkey

Turkey is the biggest dried fig producer and exporter in the world. 60-70% of world's dried fig production and 75% of world's fig export.

There are traces that figs were cultivated in their motherland Anatolia in the years of 3000-2000 B.C. and they were spread through the Mediterranean from Anatolia within time. 
 
 

Turkish dried figs are grown under natural conditions and harvested and sun dried on racks under controlled conditions. They are graded, and stored in hygienic plastic food grade crates and washed with running warm water and packed at hygienic conditions.

In fig production, especially Izmir, Odemis, Tire, Aydin, Germencik, Ortaklar are the main places.

Classifications;

There are two groups; natural and shaped (processed).In the processed group there are different types like lerida (most wanted), garland, protoben, pulled, layer, baglama etc…
Moisture should not exceed 26 % by weight respectively.

LERIDA : 

Bulk Packing:  5 / 10 /12,5 kg carton box,   Retail Packs: 4 kg , 3 kg, 2 kg, 1 kg carton boxes, 500 gr, 400 gr Cardboard Trays        

 

 

GARLAND : 

200-250-400-500 gr  PVC  or Celophane packing 

 

 

PROTOBEN ; 

Sizes: 1-6, Retail Packs: 200 / 250 / 400 / 500 g / 1kg carton packets, Foam Tray, Bulk Packing: 5 / 10 / 12.5 kg carton box

 

 

 

PULLED ;
 
Sizes: 1-6, Retail Packs: 250 / 400 / 500 g / 1kg carton packets, Foam Tray. Bulk Packing: 5 / 10 / 12.5 kg carton box
 
 
 

NATURAL :

Sizes: 1-10, Bulk Packing: 2.5 / 5 / 10 / 12.5 kg carton box         

 

LAYER  :

 

Sizes: 1-7, Retail Packs: 250 / 400 / 500 g Cellophane wrapped, carton packets 

 
 
 
DICED ; 
 
Bulk Packing: 5 / 10 / 12.5 kg carton box
 
          
 
 
PASTE :  Bulk Packing: 12.5 kg carton box

                     

SIZE   NUMBER OF THE BERRIES PER KG
1  35-40 
2  41-45 
3 46-50
4  51-55 
5 56-60
6 61-65
7 66-70
8 71-80
9  81-100
10 101-130

Nutritious of Figs;

Turkish dried figs are the most natural delicious and healthy fruits. Dried figs are fast energy giving fruits. Young and active adolescents require Calcium, Iron and Vitamin B1 which is available in dried figs. Contains high proportion of dietary fibre, and Iron Magnesium, Phosphorus and Calcium. Does not contain cholesterol, fat or Sodium. Contains easily digestible natural sugars ( glucose, fructose) minerals and vitamins.

Nutrition Information (100 gr.)
Minerals
Vitamins
Energy
217 kcal (908 kJ)
Protein
4 g
Carbohydrate
55.3 g
Fat
1.2 g
Dietary Fibre
6.7 g
Calcium
138 mg
Iron
4.2 mg
Magnesium
91.5 mg
Phosphorus
163 mg
Vitamin B1 (Thiamin)
0.073 mg
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)
0.072 mg
Turkish figs are just sun dried on racks at western Anatolia. The fig is a tiny fruit that contains hundreds of seeds which are genetically coded. If a child eats a dried fig a day, can receive all basic nutrient radicals to synthesize proteins.

Two important goals of human nutrition are attained at the same time with the consumption of dried figs.

About 10 % of the energy requirement is met by consuming 100 grams (4-6 figs) while meeting about 7% of protein requirement and while also meeting 17 percent of Recommended Daily Allowances for Calcium, and 30 % of Iron, and 30 % of Magnesium minerals and also meeting 5.2 % of Vitamin B1 and 4.5 % of Vitamin B2, which are all necessary for cell reconstruction.

Dietary fibres are useful for decreasing intraluminal colonic pressure, increasing gastrointestinal motility and increasing the volume and the weight of material that reaches the distal colon. Both soluble and insoluble fibres exert these physiologic effects whereas only soluble fibres exert metabolic effects, such as delayed glucose absorption, increased sensitivity to insulin, altered intestinal enzyme activity, binding of bile acids, and decrease in serum cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

Different kinds of fibres have different activities in human body. Some of them accelerate the digestive system, whereas some of them slow it down. Basically the fibres help the digestive system to clean the body.

Turkish dried figs contain all kinds of dietary fibres in high ratios. These are pectins, cellulose, hemicelluloses, lignin and polysaccharides. Let us see how dietary fibre works like a train in the body:
  • Water in the foods attached to the dietary fibres eases human intake. The cholesterol taken by consumption of other foods attached to these fibres. So these components are connected to each other like a train and excreted from the body without being absorbed.
  • Thus the cholesterol taken is discarded before entering circulation system, i.e. to the human blood and cholesterol levels decrease.
  • Some of the fibres found in dried figs facilitate the discarding of harmful materials out of the body quickly, whereas some of them slow down the digestion facilitating absorption of some minerals.
  • Dried figs are in the class of foods containing highest quantities of dietary fibre. 100 grams of dried figs contain about 6-7 grams of dietary fibres. The American Dietetic Association recommends a daily fibre intake of 20 to 35 grams from a variety of sources combined with a low-fat, high-carbohydrate diet.
Figs contain Calcium as much as milk. 100 grams of milk meets 17% of the Recommended Dietary Allowances for Calcium.

Calcium in the dried figs is more digestible compared to other vegetal Calcium sources. The human body needs Phosphorus with Calcium for the formation and maintenance of bones and teeth. Dried figs contain the counterbalanced amount of Phoshorus together with Calcium.

Very few foods have this nutritive balance. For this reason milk and dried figs have a distinctive importance in human nutrition.

Storage Instructions:
Light: Avoid direct sunlight, although it has no effect on quality but direct sunlight may warm the dried figs to make them more dry or activate microorganisms, if environment is humid.

Temperature: Optimum storage temperature is +60C (+420F). However +40C to +100C (+390F to +490F) shall have no adverse effect on quality. However figs can withstand well till end of spring when ambient temperatures reach +200C (+680F). No need stow in kitchen refrigerator. Display, consume and keep rest of the package at room temperatures less than +200C (+680F)

Humidity: Optimum relative humidity is 50-60 %. Avoid humid and stagnant environment.

Condensation: Differences of temperature due to night and day, rainy days or climate changes may cause condensation of moisture in air on the surface of dried figs as pure water droplets. Natural ventilation of air around dried figs is necessary.

The pure water droplets on outer surfaces of the dried figs causes the figs to darken and also activate yeasts, molds and start fermentation. The corrugated carton boxes can absorb the condensing moisture and become softer and not be able to carry the packages and may be easily torn by slight forces.

To avoid this situation, the ambient relative humidity must be less than 60% and cartons should be stowed about 10 cm (4") above the ground on pallets and cartons should be covered with cloth or plastic in high ceiling spaces. There must be at least slight natural ventilation to prevent possible moisture condensing on dried figs.

Foreign Odours: Avoid stocking near chemicals, fuels, exhaust gases, debris or any other foreign odour source.

Crystallisation On Figs: As water at the outer level of dried figs evaporate, natural sugars crystallize on the outer surface of dried figs. This is normal and natural. Other hygienic and technical precautions must be taken after G.M.P. (Good Manufacturing Practices) during storage.

Recommendations to use:
Serving portion size: 40 grams (1-3 figs)

As Snack: Eat figs as it is, except the stem and eye, which is hard to chew. If steamed or boiled, stem and eye softens to became edible.

Baking: Cut away stem and eye and quarter the dried fig. Dried figs are baking stable and acquires a very nice caramel taste.

In Breakfast Cereals: Cut away stem and eye, press figs to same height, width cut in stripes of about 5 or 10 mm. cut stripes every 5 or 10mm to obtain dices. Powder with rice flour to prevent sticking to each other and blend with other cereals.