Unorganised domestic market hits flower exports

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Ludhiana, Sep 16 (UNI) Indian floriculture export which has witnessed a growth since 1995 faces bottlenecks including bad interior road, inadequate refrigertated transport and storage facilites.

Tedious phytosanitary certification and an unorganised domestic market also hinder exports, besides trained workforce crunch to handle commericial floriculture activity.

Globally, more than 140 countries are involved in cultivation of flowers.

While Indian growers have been successful in producing world class quality flowers at lost cost, high air freight rates, low cargo capacity available, imposition of import duties, inadequate export infrastructure and many more have reduced their competitiveness, according to a by Punjab Agricultural University (PAU).

Netherland, the US, Germany, France, the UK, Switzerland, Italy and Japan are some of the nations which import flowers. The countries which export flowers include Netherlands, Columbia, Ecuador, Israel, Spain and Kenya.

Netherlands both imports and re-exports the flowers. Rose, chrysanthemum, cornation, gerbera, dahlia, poinsettia, orchids, are traded in the international market on a a large-scale.

The study pointed out that the domestic flower production had shown a growth in the recent past.

The study further stated that the agro-climatic conditions in the country facilitates production of all major flowers throughout the year in some part or the other. The improved transporation facilities has increased the availability of flowers across the country.

The study said the marketing of cut flowers in India was unorganised. In most metropolitan cities, with large market potential, flowers are brought to wholesale markets, which mostly operate in open yards.

A few large flower merchants generally buy most of the produce and distribute it to local retial outlets after significant mark up.

The retail florists operate in the open, on road sides, with different flowers arranged in large buckets.

In the metros, however, there are some good florist outlets, where flowers are kept in controlled temperature conditions, with considerable attention to value added services, the study said.

Floriculture exports from India increased from Rs 43 crore in 1995-96 to Rs 299.41 crore in 2005-06. Export of floriculture during 2005-06 witnessed a growth of 35.4 per cent over the previous year's value of Rs 221.11 crore.

Most of the total 300 export-oriented units in the country operate at less than 50 per cent of their capacity, the study said.

UNI

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