Ecuador’s flower industry blooms amidst challenges

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In the lush landscapes of Ecuador, the vibrant flower industry, especially its world-renowned roses, stands tall, navigating through economic uncertainties and environmental hurdles. This feature delves into Ecuador’s blossoming role in the global floral market, highlighting the resilience and innovation of its growers.

Ecuador boasts a thriving flower industry, ranking as the world’s third-largest exporter of cut flowers, celebrated for its exquisite roses. However, this success story has its challenges. From economic fluctuations to environmental concerns, the industry navigates a complex landscape, demonstrating remarkable resilience and a commitment to adaptation. This feature explores the multifaceted ecosystem of Ecuador’s flower industry, from its historical roots to its present-day struggles and aspirations.

The story of Ecuador’s flower industry began in the 1980s with the introduction of Dutch technology and expertise. The country’s high altitude, abundant sunshine, and fertile volcanic soil proved ideal for rose cultivation. The Andean Trade Preference Act of the United States in 1991 further bolstered the industry, allowing for tax-free exports and leading to rapid growth. Over the years, the sector expanded beyond roses, cultivating various flowers like carnations, lilies, and gypsophila, catering to international preferences.

The Global Market
Today, Ecuador stands tall in the global flower market, exporting over $937 million of cut flowers in 2021. The United States remains the primary destination, accounting for over 40% of exports, followed by Europe and Russia. This prominent position comes with intense competition from other flower-producing countries like Colombia and Kenya. However, Ecuador’s unique climatic conditions, efficient transportation networks, and focus on quality control allow it to maintain its competitive edge.


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