Many Turkish migrants in Belgium and the Netherlands originally came from Emirdağ and the surrounding villages, including Karacalar where there is a strong Alevi minority. People originally went abroad to work as miners in the 1950s and nowadays are typically occupied with running restaurants, cafes, and bars.
This emigration helps to explain why the population growth in Emirdağ in recent decades has been less than most Anatolian towns (the population of the town in 1960 was 10,069). It also means that in summer the district is swollen with local families returning on vacation.
Many of these families have invested their savings in apartment buildings, offices and shops (and smart cars) in Emirdağ. This is still a typical Turkish country town and quite conservative; the tea-gardens are segregated into areas for families and single men. There are some basic restaurants and internet cafes. There is a jandarma training camp in Emirdağ and the army is important for the economy of the town in winter.
The local cuisine includes arabaşı, a soup with dumplings.
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