Lockdown easing in Europe revives Kenyan flower industry
Kenyan flower exports have reached 60% of daily capacity (Bloomberg, 22 May) as European movement restrictions ease and Dutch auctions report growing operations. Europe’s biggest supplier of flowers was hit hard by the crash of the global $8.5 billion trade in March as countries closed their borders to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Farms exported only 20% of the 60 tons of cut flowers they normally sent daily to the UK, the Netherlands and Germany, and destroyed the rest.
However, the industry is still facing high freight costs and less space on airlines. Per-kilogram freight costs have more than doubled to $3.3, from an average of $1.5 last year. Airlines currently ship 1,600 tons of flowers weekly, compared with exporters’ demand for 4,000 tons.
Royal FloraHolland, which runs four auction sites in the Netherlands, said revenue in the week of May 11 was €113 million, 6.9% less than the same week a year ago, suggesting that the market is almost back to normal.
> Royal FloraHolland provides regular market updates and coronavirus news via its live blog.
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