May Issue 4 2012

Kenyan grower invited to attend the IBERFLORA International Fair, Spain

The 41st edition of IBERFLORA Fair, an event dedicated to flowers and plants will be held in at the Feria Valencia exhibition centre, Spain between, 3rd and 5th October 2012.  IBERFLORA International Fair of Mediterranean plants and Flowers, Technology and Garden is a showcase for International companies and buyers of prime importance in the context of international trade show.

The ambassador of the Kenyan Embassy in Spain Mr. Bramwel Kisuya has extended an invitation to the Kenya Growers through the Kenya Flower Council to send a delegation to participate in the event. He has stated that this is a great chance for the Kenyan flowers to penetrate the Spanish market.

The Kenyan Embassy in Madrid is committed towards seeing to the facilitation of a successful delegation and would therefore like the Kenyan Growers to participate in the exhibition.

KFC is requesting the Kenyan growers who would be interested in participating in the show to confirm with us earliest possible to enable the Kenya embassy in Spain organize the logistics.

EU – EAC EPA discussions in Mombasa (8-12 May 2012)

The entry into force of the  EU ESA EPA  (Mauritius, Madagascar, Seychelles and Zimbabwe)  on 15 May – brings forth hope that EU ECA EPA will also be concluded by July 2013 and ready for signature by 2014 inline with the current road map.

During a recent meeting held in Mombasa Kenya, from 8th  to 12th May 2012 good progress was made on rules of origin, dispute settlement and institutional provisions, agriculture and economic and development cooperation setting the stage for completion of negotiations by the end of this year.  The next round of technical discussions will be held in July in Brussels.

You will recall that the interim or framework EPA with the EU in 2007 was initialled and was neither signed nor ratified. They are now engaged in further EPA negotiations with the EU.

The EU represents an important trade partner for the region, with around €3 billion of imports from the EU (mainly oil products, medicines, machinery and mechanical equipment, cars, aircrafts, electrical appliances etc.) and around €2 billion of exports towards the EU (mainly agro-food products: coffee, tea, fresh cut flowers, fisheries, tobacco, cocoa etc.) in 2010. Kenya, the biggest economy and the only non – Least Developed Country (LDC) in the region, heavily relies on the EU (which represents 31% of its export market) for selling its cut flowers, tea, vegetables and coffee.

Uganda Flower Exports Decline amid High Costs

Uganda’s flower export revenues have declined amid reported economic hardship, higher energy prices and a government tax on package materials, HortiNews monitored Tuesday.

In published remarks, the Uganda Flower Exporters Association (UFEA) said the escalating costs of doing business made the commodity less competitive in the region and forces flower farms to close.

UFEA acknowledged to local media that it has failed in its five-year-plan to increase production from 200 hectares to 400 hectares and boost exports by at least 2010. “Our target was 400 hectares and [with an annual export] value of $50 million [in local currency] by the end of 2010,” said UFEA’s Executive Director Julie Musoke in a statement.

Musoke cited the double cost of energy—electricity and diesel, power outages, and high power tariffs as among the reasons as they contributed to a 200 per cent increase in operational costs.


She said the current cost of energy consumption and charges :highlights the need to interlink the growth of agriculture with reasonably cheap and competitive electricity and diesel charges.”

Additionally, she stressed, UFEA wants the Uganda Revenue Authority “to clear the impasse” surrounding the Value Added Tax (VAT) on biodegradable material with packaging industries.

UEFA told media that the rising costs forced already five farms to close. Uganda’s floriculture industry now consists of 17 commercial farms cultivating 250 hectares and exporting mainly to the European Union, industry officials said.

While the African nation earned $28.8 million from flower exports in 2008, it saw that figure declining to $26.3 million the following year and to $22.5 million in 2010, HortiNews reported earlier, citing African estimates.


It was not immediately clear what further negative impact the eurozone crisis would have on this year’s export figures.

Eighty percent of Uganda’s commodities are aimed at markets in the Netherlands and the United States, while 20 percent of flower exports arrive mainly in Britain, France and Germany, according to estimates.

Uganda isn’t alone in its struggles. Other East African nations, including Kenya, are also expressing concerns over their exports and try to seek new markets.

Horticulture officials have warned that International Monetary Fund projections that Europe will go into a recession in 2012 will have a wider negative impact on East Africa’s horticulture industry because of a slowdown or fall in demand.

Source: HortiNews/Stefan J. Bos :

Esimo Flower to Invest in Horticulture in Ethiopia

Esimo Flower and Agro Industries plc, an Indian Company is set to invest 100 million US dollars in horticulture in Ethiopia. The company will begin operations next July on a 71 hectare plot of land it acquired in the Amhara Regional State.

The company has finalized land leveling work on the farm as well as building a fence around the property and constructing a pack house to process harvested flowers for export said Sanjaye Bangali, Owner and General Manager of Esimo.

The company registered in 2009 with a capital of just 10 million increased its investment to drill water wells and to erect green houses and warehouses he explained.

Esimo Flower, which plans to produce cut flowers, fruits and vegetables for export to the European, Middle Eastern and Russian markets is in negotiations with Indian, Israeli and Palestinian companies to procure greenhouse supplies for an estimated 15 US dollars m2

Horticulture development is a high risk investment but with high potential for investment and Esimo Flower has a good chance of succeeding in the next few years according to Bangali.

The company plans to grow 75,000 rose plants on one hectare to total in a harvest of 80,000-90,000 stems in the first phase production which aims to 15 hectares. The company aims to increase its harvest to 90,000-100,000 in the second phase of production according to Bangali.

The construction work for Esimo which consists of water well drilling and the building of warehouses, flower stores and staff offices was undertaken by Kifle Bisrat Building Contractor.


Dutch florists want to know harvest date of flowers

When florists claim on flowers’ quality, it is often about short vase life, “because the flowers are not fresh”. Therefore most of them believe that providing of harvest date is a good idea.

The Dutch Horticulture Board (PT) asked its panel of florists in the Netherlands about their opinion as to the flowers’ quality. 166 florists have responded. Generally they are satisfied from the cut flowers quality. However some 20% of the respondents announced to too often they find “less good” quality in the deliveries.

81% of the responding florist

s replied that a harvest date is a good idea, of which 46% believe that it must be implemented, while the rest just find it a nice idea. 8% think it is not necessary at all, and would lead to extra costs.

70% of the Dutch florists believe that enough ‘high value’ flowers are available in the market, enabling them to distinguish their shop. Yet, 27% do not agree.


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