Rwanda is again exhibiting at the International Floriculture Trade Fair (IFTF) in the Netherlands, this year from the 8th-10th of November, at stand no. B5.30 under the Rwandafresh brand. The exhibition will add value to Rwanda’s floriculture sector on the international platform. A delegation from Bella Flowers, Oxfam Rwanda and Bright Harvest, along with DUHAMIC-ADRI, a small farmer cooperatives’ promoter are attending this event to promote the visibility of Rwandan flowers on the market and increase their clientele base.
Ms. Janet Basiima, the Division Manager of Export Markets Development & Innovation at the National Agriculture Export Development Board’s (NAEB), stated that IFTF 2023 shall be an opportunity for Rwanda to seek market linkages with international buyers. “We hope to create awareness of the ‘Rwandafresh’ as a brand globally, thus expand market share of Rwandan flowers internationally.”
According to Ms. Maria Casimiro, the Marketing Manager of Bella Flowers, their participation in the IFTF 2023 is intended to reach out to new clientele from different regions especially European and Asian countries. “We wish to engage with new buyers from the European continent, but also Japan and Korea are countries of our interest.”
On the other hand, Mr. Janvier Ugeziwe, a delegate from DUHAMIC-ADRI representing small-scale summer flowers expressed the following, “Our participation in the IFTF 2023 will provide us with the opportunity to learn more on increasing production and access to markets for summer flowers and replicate it in Rwanda”.
Ann Karemera, the Managing Director of Bright Harvest Company expressed that her company chose to participate with an aim to show case their flower varieties. She further claimed that the exhibition aims to increase Rwandan flowers’ international market visibility by facilitating interactions with buyers to understand market trends and dynamics in the floriculture value chain.
Godfrey Gakwandi delegate said that Oxfam’s support of participation of flower exporters is part of not only increasing visibility of Rwanda’s quality flowers but, more importantly, facilitate sustainable market linkage of Rwanda industry to the rest of the globe. He thanked EU for supporting Rwanda’s flower industry through “sustainable livelihoods in horticulture value chains project that financed this year participation.
“The Netherlands is known as the land of flowers”, said Rwanda’s Ambassador to the Kingdom of the Netherlands Olivier J.P. Nduhungirehe. “Flowers are economically important to the country. A significant proportion of the country’s agricultural exports are derived from the sale of freshly cut flowers, bulbs and mature plants, and the Netherlands contributions to the flower industry are so significant that they make up around two-thirds of the world’s total flora sales and completely dominate the European marketplace”, the ambassador said.
The outcome of Rwandan delegates’ attendance to the IFTF shall greatly influence sales of Rwandan flowers through diversified flower markets. The IFTF experience here in the Netherlands will guide Rwandan companies to enhance production and expand the floriculture sector due to market opportunities.
NAEB’s statistical reports on Rwandan floriculture shows that 23,678,585 stems of rose flowers and 8,881,404 stems of summer flowers were exported during the FY 2022-2023. These generated USD 4,535,223 in foreign exchange earnings. A significant 98% of the Rwandan flowers are primarily sold to the Netherlands, with prospective markets developing in Australia and the United Kingdom.
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