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17 July 2018

Diversification drives development of Chinese floriculture sector

Many of you will consider The Netherlands as one of the largest traders of floriculture goods. But did you know that China’s Yunnan province is home to an impressive floriculture industry as well? Last week the potential of the Chinese floriculture industry was exposed during the 19th edition of the Kunming International Flower Show.

Floriculture epicentre
Kunming, and moreover the Yunnan province, is China’s epicentre for the production and trade of plants and flowers. The region is home to more than 200,000 producers, the industry employs 800,000 people and the production area totals more than 100,000 hectares.

Almost 80% of the flowers in China’s medium-sized cities come from Yunnan. Especially the Chinese government has always been an important buyer of the flowers. After few slower years in which the Chinese floriculture industry felt the effect of government reforms, the flower market is finally picking up again.

Solid opportunities
“Investors once again show interest in the development of floriculture greenhouse projects”, said Huiquan Chen, Project Development Manager at Ridder. “Among other reasons, important trends in the field of variety diversification creates more demand for flowers and plants. While in the past there was mainly interest for lilies and anthuriums, these days there is a lot of interest for other varieties and colors too. Many growth can therefore be seen in varieties like pot roses, mini roses, hydrangeas and succulents. Solid opportunities for the development and expansion of floriculture businesses are on the horizon.”

Setting the standard
Chen explained that many of these developments currently take place throughout the whole Yunnan province. “In the past many production was concentrated around Kunming, where Dutch producers of flowers and starting material set the standard by introducing present-day horticulture technology. A good example of this is our client Kunming Hasfarms; a 25 hectare large scale Dutch-owned greenhouse operation that produces carnation, hydrangea and alstoemeria . However, we see also more development at a local level and in different regions. We are for example working on the Phase IV expansion for Chinese greenhouse grower Jianye in Henan. The grower is located south of Beijing and grows a large variety of anthuriums and flower varieties. This project is a great example of how partnerships between Chinese and Dutch parties can lead to a successful Chinese-owned horticulture venture.”

Controlled environment
Many visitors of the Kunming International Flower Show showed interest in automating their greenhouse operations. “As a result of increasing labor cost, many growers consider to integrate technology to make their business more efficient”, said Chen. “As well as this, there is a lot of interest in controlled environment technology. It seems to be that growers are more aware of the advantages of growing in a fully automated, controlled greenhouse environment.”

Ridder is very committed to the development of Chinese horticulture. With a strong local presence and office in Shanghai, the company has been supporting the Chinese horticulture industry for more than 20 years.

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