"First, we had the plane crisis, then the government reshuffle and now a kilo of tomatoes costs between 60 kurus to 1 lira [$0.2 to $0.3]. Farmers bear high costs while the prices for their goods are low. They can no longer withstand this. We call on our government to take urgent steps to open the Russian market for our produce," President of Antalya Chamber of Agriculture Nazif Alp said during the protest.
At the beginning of 2016, Russia has imposed a number of restrictive measures, including a ban on food and flowers imports, on Turkey in response to the downing of a Russian military aircraft by a Turkish fighter jet in Syria on November 24, 2015.
In June, following Turkey's apology to Russia for the November 2015 incident, the sides began a reconciliation process. In August, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Russia would gradually lift the economic restrictions imposed on Turkey.
On October 10, Putin announced the removal of embargo on Turkish fresh and dried oranges, tangerines, peaches, nectarines, plums and sloes. The imports of tomatoes, apples, strawberries, zucchinis, pumpkins and most poultry products are still banned.