Two floors of the imposing Metropolitan Convention Center, in Quito’s Bicentennial Park, were filled with the best roses, sunflowers, gypsophilias, orchids, among others, at Expo Flor 2022. The event that takes place four years after the pandemic welcomed 105 producers with their respective stands which will be visited for three days by at least 2,000 flower buyers.
The fair brings novelties in varieties like every year, but also a commitment to the environment and the adoption of measures to become a zero carbon industry by 2030. In addition to environmental awareness, the change is also due to market demands. Alejandro Martínez, executive president of Exploflores, explained that for example there is now many clients millennials what do they value much the issue of production with care environmental and that precisely take care of the carbon footprint.
Thus, according to Martínez, at the moment in Ecuador several flower companies are generating an accounting of carbon generation that is later compensated. For accounting, a carbon emission calculator is used that was generated in February, and then seeks to offset carbon production by reforesting, recycling water, lowering emissions, among others.
Among the interested buyers, the largest delegation is made up of United States with 870 interested, followed by the European with 300.
In the place, Sofía Sánchez, manager of Plantec, company that is representative of four breeders of flowers, that is to say of those who create the varieties that enter the market, explained that in this fair the arrival of the largest number of visitors and flower buyers in ten years is expected, since it opens after four years. From booth you could see the varieties of roses of very showy colors like reds, fuchsias, oranges, intense yellows. Each one with its name: Jacarandá, Gold Finch, Fortune, among others.
Cristina Maldonado, executive of Eco Roses, a 25-year-old rose-producing farm in the market and located in Machachi, indicated that for his company the fair is an interesting opportunity for customers to learn about the work. He explained that they are producers of exclusive varieties such as Toffee, caramel-colored roses, and Westmister Abadi, which are greyish flowers. This is a farm with environmentally friendly practices.
This year the floricultural sector thinks that it could exceed the $1 billion in exports. Alejandro Martínez said that the effect of Russia and Ukraine on energy could mean that there is not much flower production in Europe, which represents an opportunity for the country. The increase in exports will not be based on volume, but rather due to a rise in prices, due to a certain scarcity. However, the factor of the crisis is also present, which makes customers prioritize their spending. As this product is considered sumptuary, it could have less demand.
“Through this new edition, our main objective is to generate business in favor of the sector and the Ecuadorian economy, as well as expand new markets with countries that are potential buyers,” said the executive president of Expoflores during his opening speech. He said that the strengthening of the necessary public policies is required to further protect and promote its solidity, since there are several factors that make it fragile despite having a solid structure. Among the requests to the Government are greater flexibility in terms of working hours, reinforcement of the control of informality and protection and greater incentives for formal farms, implementation of a differentiated policy on imports to balance the logistics costs of shipments and more trade agreements .
The event was attended by the mayor of Quito, Santiago Guarderas; the Minister of the Environment, Gustavo Manrique, and the Minister(s) of Foreign Trade, Daniel Legarda. (YO)