The Cut-Flower Industry in Kenya

The Cut-Flower Industry in Kenya has been a growth engine. It produces annual revenue of nearly 600 Million Dollars. The industry's leap is an example of regional economic development that is pushing forward a national economy.

The Cut-Flower Industry has been active in Kenya since the 1980's, but only in the 1990's has it transformed into a major player in the international market. Several factors made Kenya attractive for growing flowers: a cheap and relatively educated labor force, suitable climate conditions and proximity to Europe's big markets. These factors attracted capital and the knowledge needed for boosting the industry.

Today, the Cut-Flower Industry is the fastest growing segment in Kenya. It is also the largest export industry in the country responsible for annual turnover of nearly 600 Million Dollars. Kenya is the fifth largest flower exporter in the world. It exports primarily to the Netherlands, Germany and the U.K. The development of the flower industry in Kenya is an example of regional economic development that exploits comparative advantages to export to developed markets.

Sources:

The Economist, "Roses are red", 02/07/2008.

Kenya's Cut-Flower Cluster, The Institute for Strategy and Competitiveness, Harvard University, 05/04/2007.

Cowell, A., "Kenya Lets 100 Flowers Bloom", The New York Times, 05/23/2003.