December Issue 4 2011

The KFC – WWF Project kicks off

The KFC – WWF Project on “Capacity building to promote responsible water use by Lake Naivasha Flower growers contributing to sustainable investment” has already kicked off.

The main objective of the project is to “promote effective water and land use management practices, nature conservation for sustainable investment and improved livelihoods”, with specific objectives as follows:

  1. Review and update the KFC Small Scale Growers Code of Practice.
  2. Liaise with Alliance for Water Stewardship in the development of the Lake Naivasha water use protocol into the KFC CoPs.
  3. Coordinate training on compliance amongst growers in Naivasha, complimented with evaluation of technologies available for waste water / effluent treatment.         
  4. Train two KFC Auditors through GlobalGAP.
  5. Audit and Certify flower farms against the KFC CoPs in Naivasha.

The reviewing of the KFC Smallholders Code of Practice of 2002 has been done to meet basic local and international requirements including GlobalGAP for market access.   KFC sourced for a professional consultant to execute this task.

KFC organized two trainings, one for the main growers within the Lake Naivasha catchment and the other one for the smallholders, on implementation of codes of practice and compliance. The trainings were held concurrently on 21st and 22nd December 2011, one at the Fish Eagle Inn with 22 persons attending and the other at the Lakeside Tourist Lodge in Naivasha with 27 participants.

The smallholders’ farm audits will take place on 28th and 29th December 2011.

Russia becomes member of WTO

After 18 years of negotiations, on Friday 16 December Russia’s formal accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) was finally approved during the WTO Ministerial Conference in Geneva. The Russia’s accession seals the inclusion of the last missing major trading partner in the multilateral legal framework of the WTO.

From the date of accession, the Russian Federation has committed to fully apply all WTO provisions, with recourse to very few transitional periods (see details below).
On average, the final legally binding tariff ceiling for the Russian Federation will be 7.8% compared with a 2011 average of 10% for all products:

  • The average tariff ceiling for agriculture products will be 10.8%, lower than the current average  of 13.2%
  • The ceiling average for manufactured goods will be 7.3% vs. the 9.5% average today on manufactured imports.

The final bound rate will be implemented on the date of accession for more than one third of national tariff lines with another quarter of the tariff cuts to be put in place three years later. The longest implementation period is 8 years for pork, followed by 7 years for motor cars, helicopters and civil aircraft.

More information on the average duties for the floriculture sector after full implementation of tariff reductions will be communicated as soon as possible.

Next steps: The Russian Federation has now 6 months, until 15 June 2012 to ratify its accession package. Thirty days after the notification to the WTO of the ratification, the Russian Federation will become a fully-fledged member.

Source: Union Fleur

GlobalGAP makes its appearance at the clock

As of 1st January 2012, supplied lots and auction clocks will show whether growers hold a GlobalGAP certificate. Global stands for worldwide and G.A.P stands for Good Agricultural Practice. Formerly called EurepGAP, this certificate has been developed by European retailers for the primary food sector. There is a separate module for horticulture.

GlobalGAP is a temporary measure for lots supplied to the auction clock. The aim is to help buyers select products for, in particular, retail. More and more retail customers are making environmental and social demands of producers, and many demand evidence of MPS A, B or C or GlobalGAP certification as a prerequisite for doing business.

MPS already appears on supplied lots at the clocks in the current auction systems, but GlobalGAP does not. GlobalGAP will now be made visible by showing the letter P in the MPS box. This is a temporary measure because it is preferable to be able to show all relevant certificates with supplied lots. That is not possible with the proposed measure because only one certificate can be made visible. The MPS entry will continue to be shown for MPS participants with MPS A, B or C and an MPS-GAP certificate. The certifiers are going to deliver the relevant data to FloraHolland.

If you have any questions about this, please contact Loek Barendse (email at loekbarendse@floraholland.nl, Phone no. +31 (0)6 31 23 88 18 51.

Dutch export flowers and plants remains the same

The total Dutch export of flowers and ornamental plants this year is expected to be € 5,100 million, or a bit more. This is almost the same value as last year. Exporters expect this figure to reach the same value next year. However, they are not convinced as the economic forecasts are not too good.

The year started very good, but this was due to the weather, which did not harm the export. The export to Germany (the main export destination) decreased by 3 per cent to € 1,500 million.  The Scandinavian customers bought less flowers and plants, while the sales to Eastern Europe, especially Russia, increased.

Exporters are worried about a lower price level next year, which will cause problems for growers. Other worries are the increase of competition and the increased term of payment. Traffic jams and stringent law making about driving hours will increase the pressure on the export.

Source: Hortibiz

Sustainability important for future Dutch horticulture

Towards 2025 the area used for greenhouse horticulture in the Netherland is expected to remain more or less stable at 10,000 ha and sustainability will become a main topic. These are two conclusions of the LEI (part of Wageningen University in the Netherlands) after studying the future of the Dutch horticulture.

While the Dutch horticulture was mainly focused on the European market, the LEI presume that the future market growth will take place outside Europe. Although long distances make the export to markets outside Europe less sustainable, new storage techniques provide more and more possibilities.

The LEI believes that the cost-price strategy of Dutch growers is not sustainable in the long term. The benefits of scale extension are not infinite and level off once a specific size has been reached. International competitions from new and existing production countries are becoming better, capable of match the quality of Dutch-grown products.

An important goal for the growers is to convert sustainability initiatives to cash, which is not easy to reach because the economic situation in the markets is far from good and consumers genuinely want demonstrable added value.

According to the LEI, this is also an opportunity: added value in quality combined with added value in sustainability. Concrete vulnerabilities for the Dutch growers between now and 2025 are energy consumption, CO2 emission, pesticides and emissions to surface water and groundwater and sufficient high quality workers.

Source: Hortibiz

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