Author(s): MAHARAJ & DORREN
Recently, developing countries such as Colombia and Kenya have taken a large and growing share of the world market in cut flowers. Many Northern growers fear this competition. Yet what is really happening? Many of the African growers are themselves European. Developing countries pay dearly for managers, crop specialists and marketing experts from the North, as well as for plant material and machinery. They devote scarce land and often scarce water to the business, and provide cheap labour that is often exposed to toxic chemicals in a manner that would be illegal in Europe. Yet while profits from the trade are constantly being siphoned off to the North, development consultants from Europe are advising entrepreneurs and governments to undertake the strategy.
Part 1 The world flower sector: the global flower market - cut flower competition; the trade - plant money, reap flowers; transport - flights of flowers; development assistance - the making of a boom. Part 2 National flower sectors: labour conditions, health and government - the case of Colombia; where have all the profits gone? the case of Kenya; structural adjustment and food supply - the case of Zimbabwe; joint ventures and tax exemptions - the case of India; trouble in the centre - the case of the Netherlands.