Category: "Horticulture"

Ethiopia seen doubling '08 flower export income

December 1st, 2008
Flower farm in Ethiopia

Ethiopia seen doubling '08 flower export income

ADDIS ABABA, Dec 1 (Reuters)
- Income from Ethiopia's flower exports will more than double to $150 million this year, but future expansion may be hit by the global financial crisis, the head of a private industry body said on Monday.

"People's priority in a global crisis is not to buy flowers. Their priority is to provide food," Tsegaye Abebe, chairman of the Ethiopian Horticulture Association, told Reuters.

Abebe said Ethiopia's fast-expanding sector, which hopes to rival neighbouring Kenya's larger flower industry, was on track to produce between 800 million and 900 million stems for export this year worth $150 million.

That compares to 365 million stems worth $64 million in 2007. But plans to double exports again in 2009 would be affected by the crisis, which was forcing flower prices down in Ethiopia's main European export markets, Abebe said.

Some of Ethiopia's 106 producers, including local and foreign investors, had already begun diversifying into vegetables and fruits, he said. But Ethiopian flowers remained popular abroad because they were organic, Abebe said.

"We do not use pesticide. Our farmers are using integrated pest-control management without recourse to chemicals," he said.

Offering tax breaks to attract investment, Ethiopia hopes flower exports will overtake coffee and be worth $1 billion in five years time. Flowers are now grown around the country, with farms employing about 60,000 people, mainly women.

Kenya earned about $1 billion from horticulture in 2007. Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda are also developing flower industries

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Another flower farm up for auction in Ethiopia

November 27th, 2008
Flower farm in Ethiopia

Another flower farm up for auction in Ethiopia

By Groum Abate

Source: Capital

The Development Bank of Ethiopia (DBE) has put the second flower farm up for auction in a span of a month's time. Lucy Ethiopia Floriculture Plc has been tabled for auction after it defaulted on it its loan from the bank.
According to the notice posted on the state-owned Amharic daily, Addis Zemen, the farm has been tagged with a floor price of over 7.9 million birr.

Located in Dendi Woreda of the Oromia Regional State, the farm occupies 35.74 hectares leased from farmers.
Last month DBE put another farm, RSL Flower and Vegetable Plc, and its buildings up for auction after it similarly defaulted on its bank loan. RSL is also located in the Oromia Regional State, Ada'a Wereda, lying on 20 hectares.
RSL Vegetable and Floriculture Plc recently introduced a bio-control pesticide for flower farms.

Ethiopia has identified 400,000 hectares of land as being suitable for the development of fruits and vegetables and over 200 companies have now invested in the sector, predominately in the Rift Valley region.

From the 1.5 billion dollars Ethiopia generated from exports in the 2007/08 budget year, fruits and vegetables fetched 121 million dollars.
However, the industry has been under close scrutiny from trade unions and environmentalists for its use of agro-chemicals that they consider hazardous.
Until December 2007, the amount of land available for flower cultivation was 3,255 hectares, of which 974 hectares was covered with greenhouses. By 2009, the government expects 1,239 hectares of land to be dedicated to Ethiopia's fastest growing crop

MIDROC Ethiopia adds Floriculture to menu

July 28th, 2008

MIDROC Ethiopia adds Floriculture to menu

By Muluken Yewondwossen

Source:

lture plc, a new sister company of MIDROC Ethiopia Technology Group, owned by Ethiopian born Saudi business-tycoon Sheik Mohamed Hussein Al-amoudi, has purchased a 49 hectare farm from Prince Vegetable and Ethio Dream to invest on flower, vegetable and fruit farming.

According to sources, GITTU secured 9 hectares from Prince located in Ziway, 160 Km south east of Addis Ababa in Oromia region to cultivate vegetables and fruit. The 40 hectares is from Ethio Dream in Holeta, 70 Km west of Addis Ababa, Oromia, also for flower farm.
GITTU is also cultivating vegetable and fruit plantations on 100 hectares, 80 in Bishoftu (Debrezeit) and 20 in Koka, sources disclosed to Capital.

For this project, the company is investing 150 million birr. The Koka and Bishoftu projects are expected to start production in six months for export to the international market.

Another project which is also under MIDROC, Horizon Plantations Ethiopia, has been operational since January 2008.
Enjoying 50 million dollars in annual budgets for the next five years, Horizon Plantations p.l.c. will entail the development, cultivation and management of 253,000 hectares of oil palm, rubber, jatropa and tea in Ethiopia. The project directly employs 50,000 and indirectly benefits 350,000 others.

It is recalled Sheik Mohamed Hussein Al-amoudi and Tissa Perera, Director General of AgriNexus, the Malaysian firm which runs the project, signed the agreement on January 23, 2008 at Sheraton Addis. As per the agreement, AgriNexus will be providing consultancy, technical, and training services for a five year period.
At the ceremony, Jemal Ahmed, Deputy General Manager of Horizon Plantations stated that the investment demands at least five years before earning its first profits.

Horizon Plantations has secured the 250,000 hectares in Mezenger, Metekel, and Bench-Maji zones of the Gambella, Benishangul-Gumuz, and South Ethiopia Peoples’ states. 100,000 hectares will be devoted entirely to jatropha curcas, a drought-resistant perennial which grows well in marginal or poor soil. Jatropha is easy to establish and grows relatively quickly, producing seed for fifty years. The seeds have an oil content of 30 % and when refined, produce high quality bio-diesel for the use of standard diesel engines. Combustion is also clear and smoke free. The by-products can be used as organic fertilizer and insecticides in the form of pressed cakes.

The rubber tree plantation covers 85,000 hectares. Rubber tree is a plantation crop of major economic value because its sap-like extract, known as latex, can be collected and is the primary source of natural rubber. Rubber harvesting begins once the tree is five to six years old and its productive life-time is up to twenty five years.
The oil palm, which is used in commercial agriculture in the production of palm oil and tea (Camellia Sinensis), which have an average ratio of 1.00 to 1.25 workers per hectare, are allocated 58,000 and 10,000 hectares respectively.

The plantation project is to create new housing, townships, villages, roads, telecommunications, infrastructure, hospitals, markets, irrigations, water supply systems, schools, vocational training centers and others as it employs thousands once it becomes fully functional.
This agricultural project further advance the investments of Sheik Mohammed’s “MIDROC-Ethiopia Technology Group.’’ Sheik Mohammed Hussein Ali AL-Amoudi and his family established the MIDROC Investment Group in Ethiopia, consisting of over 30 companies. Starting from year 2000, five of the companies were placed under the leadership of CEO, Dr. Arega Yirdaw, and the number has since increased to eleven.

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First Lady of Djibouti gets 20 hectares of land in Ethiopia

July 28th, 2008
Khadra Mohammed, First Lady of Djibouti, has received the 20 hectares of land in the Sebeta area for a flower farm Photo Capital


Ethiopia - A FIRST LADY’S BOUQUET

By Groum Abate

Source: Capital

Khadra Mohammed, First Lady of Djibouti, has received the 20 hectares of land in the Sebeta area for a flower farm, on Tuesday July 22, 2008 from Alemu Sime, Investment Bureau Head of the Oromia Regional State in Ethiopia.

The First Lady received the plot on behalf of her son Ayinashe Omar Guelleh, whom it was learnt, plans to engage in the booming flower sector in Ethiopia. Floriculture already earns Ethiopia over 150 million dollars annually.

The Ethiopian government is keen to encourage investors, offering them a five-year tax holiday and duty-free import of machinery.
The area, 30 minutes south of Addis Ababa with green hills and lush valleys, is ideal for cultivating the country’s fastest growing export – flowers.

Ethiopia exports more than 80 million stems a month to 40 countries. 70% percent is to the Netherlands, from where they are sent around the world. It also exports to Germany, Britain, Russia and, in smaller amounts, to the United States and the Middle East.

Five years ago, Ethiopia made just $159,000 from exports of cut flowers, cuttings and summer flowers. Last year that had grown to $63.5 million and this year it is expected to hit $166 million.

Last week, President Ismael Omar Guelleh of Djibouti obtained 10,000 hectares of land around Bale, Oromia Regional State for investing in the agriculture sector. The multi-million dollar investment is expected to commence in the coming few weeks. The plot is mainly slated for growing wheat.

The president also visited the 10,000 meter square plot on Babogaya Lake in Bishoftu (Debre Zeit) town 45 kilometers south east of Addis Ababa and received a title deed for the plot to construct his vacation home.

Khadra, during the ceremony on Tuesday July 22, 2008 also visited the plot, which her son is going to invest.
The title deed for a 20 hectare flower farm was also presented to the first lady last week on Friday July 18, 2008 during the ceremony that also presented President Guelleh with his title deed for both sites in Bishoftu and Bale.

Warda A. Graham, owner of Wajag Gas and Alemayehu Ketema a businessman prominent in the construction sector facilitated the investment opportunity.

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Ethiopia Fights Off Famine Image by Growing Long-Stemmed Roses

July 2nd, 2008

Ethiopia Fights Off Famine Image by Growing Long-Stemmed Roses


July 2 (Bloomberg)
-- Not many people seek their fortune in Ethiopia. Yet former computer consultant Bhanu Prasad took a friend's advice in 2002 and left home in Hyderabad, India, to try his luck at flower farming in the east African country.

``He said, `It's a country coming up, it's safe, and the climate is good for flowers,''' Prasad said. ``We guessed the business would take off.''


Read Complete Article from Bloomberg News

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