Kenya prides herself of a blooming flower sector and partnered with fourteen (14) pavilions at Expo 2020 Dubai to distribute one million branded red roses this Valentine’s Day as the world celebrated love the Kenyan way: “From Kenya with love.”
The pavilions distributing Kenyan flowers included Sudan, Chile, Nigeria, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Philippines, Dubai Cares, San Marino, Marshall Islands, Malaysia, Lesotho, Mexico, Bhutan and Malta.
Top world flower exporter
Kenya is Africa’s lead exporter of flowers and ranks as the fourth largest exporter of flowers globally behind Netherlands, Colombia and Ecuador.
The most significant markets for Kenyan flowers are the European Union, United States of America, United Kingdom, Russia, Australia, Asia and Africa.
Kenya is the lead exporter of cut flowers to the European Union (EU) with a market share of about 38%. Approximately 50% of exported flowers are sold through the Dutch auctions, although direct sales are growing. Kenyan flowers are sold in more than 60 countries.
The main flowers grown in Kenya are roses, carnations, alstromeria, gypsophilla, lilies, eryngiums, arabicum, hypericum, statice, and a range of other summer flowers.
According to the Kenya Flower Council, Kenya’s flower exports have grown in volume and value over the years with roses having the most demand worldwide.
The demand for flowers has especially grown rapidly in United Arab Emirates, Germany, Saudi Arabia, China, Oman and Kuwait. These are new markets that Kenyan exporters are considering for enhanced export trade.
In the United Kingdom, supermarkets are the main flower outlets. Over 25% of exported flowers are delivered directly to these multiples, providing an opportunity for value addition at source through sleeving, labelling and bouquet production.
Showcasing Kenya’s Trade, Investment and Tourism opportunities at Dubai Expo 2020
Kenya is among the 192 countries which participated at the Expo 2020 Dubai, which has so far attracted 7 million visitors since its opening on 1st October 2021. Kenya is leveraging on this global event to showcase its Trade, Investment and Tourism opportunities to the world, including visitors to the Kenya Pavilion and the UAE business community.
In a bid to position the country as home to the best cut flowers exporters in the world, Kenya ran a campaign dubbed, From Kenya with Love, during Valentine’s Day at the Expo 2020 Dubai.
Flower distribution using carts at the Dubai Expo 2020
Kenya distributed about 250,000 or 9.5 tonnes of fresh cut flowers from local growers, as a way of giving consumers from all over the world a chance of experiencing their special fragrances. The participating growers include; Fleur Africa, Tambuzi Farm, Molo Greens, Panocal, Wildfire, Penta flowers, Sian Roses, Nini Limited, Marginpar Group, United Selections, Bliss Flora and Mega Pack (K) Ltd who have donated various varieties of roses and summer flowers, popular varieties in the UAE market.
Kenya’s flower industry affects over 2 million people
The flower industry has a significant impact on Kenya’s earnings and contributes about 2% to the GDP. It is estimated that over 500,000 people depend on the floriculture industry impacting over 2 million livelihoods.
The main flower growing areas are around Lake Naivasha, Mt. Kenya, Nairobi, Thika, Kiambu, Athi River, Kitale, Nakuru, Kericho, Nyandarua, Trans Nzoia, Uasin Gishu and Eastern Kenya.
In August 2021, Kenya exported flowers worth about Ksh.10 billion about 90 million U.S. dollars, a significant increase in comparison to the previous month. The export value of flowers has been fluctuating amidst the Covid 19 pandemic, peaking at approximately 14 billion KSh (129 million U.S. dollars) in January 2021.