Mehmet Bey

Mehmet Bey is one of Sakaltutan's more entrepreneurial farmers, with income from a variety of sources. He plants wheat on 25 ha, partly rented from other villagers, which he ploughs with his own tractor. Yields are low, due to the low rainfall and lack of irrigation. In addition, he keeps livestock - 220 sheep, 2 donkeys and 5 or 6 goats. The wool is no longer used for the traditional carpets, but sold unprocessed to other villagers for stuffing mattresses. Mehmet hires a shepherd from Kayseri during the summer months, as there are no villagers willing to take on the work. Sixty of the sheep are milked for three months over summer, producing cheese for his family's own consumption and for sale. Most of Mehmet's time is spent on non-agricultural activities. He takes on seasonal work as a tiler, and has a business as a stonemason, making statues of lions from the yellow stone of a nearby quarry to sell to hotels on the Turkish coast.


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