Indian jasmine flowers: High but sensitive prices
Every year, the demand for jasmine flowers increases. "The demand is going up by 15 percent a year," says Raja. According to him, increasingly more people are into using naturally grown things instead of artificial. Besides that is the transportation, open market, research and development on packaging materials that enabled the export of these type of flowers to thrive. "It all leads to a higher availability of fresh flowers around the world and therefore it reaches the end customer with the desired freshness."
High but sensitive prices winter period
The demand increases, but the production decreases year after year by, according to Raja, 5 percent a year. This leads to higher prices, especially during the winter period. However, the prices fluctuate every day as they are very sensitive to the supply, demand and the time the flowers arrive on the market. "We can say during the winter season the price ranges from INR (indian rupees) 200(3 USD) to 600 (9 USD) per kg of loose jasmine bud. However, at some times it has gone to INR 800 (12 USD) to 1000 (15 USD) per kg," says Raja. "During winter time, the bud does not blossom very fast, but in the summer season it will. So in summer prices keeps down towards INR 20 per kg and keep varying somewhere up to INR 100 per kg," he adds.
As many jasmine flowers are being exported to European countries, good packaging is important. "Packing will be done with a thermocol box surrounded by aluminum foil paper. The flowers are put in the box and on top of that the ice gel sheets. Then the flowers follow again and so on. It can go to 3 layers in a gross weight box of 15 kg maximum. So the net weight of flowers comes close to 10 kg in a box," he says.
Alaya Impex is an company that is actively exporting jasmine flowers from Madurai, Southern India to the rest of the world. India has a lot of agricultural land and jasmine is one of the major agricultural sectors in and around Madurai. According to Raja, Madurai is the temple city that produces huge amounts of jasmine flowers.
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