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Alexander Litvinenko, Da Rosa:

Russian grower thrives with pot roses

"In about two to three years, we expect the vegetable market in Russia to be full, so we decided to diversify business with the production of ornamentals", says Alexander Litvinenko, Project manager at Russian vegetable grower group of companies Gorkunov. Last July, their new company Da Rosa put their first Kordana pot roses on the market and they attended the FlowersExpo Moscow for the first time. Cultivating this crop seems to be a good decision, as the reactions from clients and potential clients are very positive.

First Russian pot rose producer
According to Litvinenko, Da Rosa is the first high quality producer of pot roses in Russia. Last year, they decided to grow an ornamental crop and started to cooperate with German breeder Kordes Roses and Danish pot rose grower RosaDanica. "Kordes provided the company with the rights and stock to produce the crop and RosaDanica the technical and cultivation know-how", explains Litvinenko.

With a group of people, Da Rosa travelled to Denmark to work and receive training at RosaDanica to learn more about the crop. In the meantime, a new 1.6 ha greenhouse was built by Hortilife, equipped with state of the art techniques. The greenhouse was put in operation in April 2017 and they started to grow the Kordana Classic assortment pot roses that consists of eight varieties. In July 2017, the first roses were put on the market. Annually, they expect to produce 2 million pot roses.



Positive reactions
Litvinenko is very satisfied with the reactions they received. "Our clients are wholesalers and supermarket chains and they are very pleased with the roses, and in particular with the quality. 100 percent of our clients reordered." It is something new, also for their clients. As Da Rosa is the first professional Russian pot rose producer, they need to think carefully about the pricing of the product. "Before we started off our production, all pot roses on the Russian market were imported. Now, we can deliver a 'fresher' and, not to forget, high quality product. For this reason, we decided to keep our prices a little higher than the imported pot roses. And our clients seem to be willing to pay this price. Russians are looking for quality and if the quality is high, the Russian buyers are willing to pay it."

Not everyone happy
The introduction of Russian pot roses is not that well received by everyone in the industry. "All pot roses sold in Russia used to be imported from growers abroad. Now, as we enter the market and will put 2 million pot roses on the market every year, the demand for their products will probably decrease. This in turn makes our entry not that beloved by fellow growers. But the market of pot plants is growing in Russia and there will be enough room for everyone on it." 


Alexander Litvinenko and Svitlana at the FlowersExpo in Moscow, Russia.

FlowersExpo

At the FlowersExpo in Moscow, Russia, Da Rosa presented its products for the first time. Also here, reactions to the product were very positive. "The exhibition has been a success for Da Rosa. It is a real business to business show where we met many new and potential clients."

Expansion plans
Due to the successful introduction of the Kordana, Litvinenko is eager to expand the assortment of pot roses. "Kordes also has a series with bigger flowers (Grande) and a series with scented flowers (Aroma), and we will be trialling both series soon." And they are even looking beyond pot roses. "Maybe in two years, we will also start with the cultivation of cut flowers."

For more information: 
Group of Companies Gorkunov - Da Rosa
Alexander Litvinenko
Email: a.litvinenko@gorkunov.com
www.darosa.ru


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