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Devaluating ruble talk of town at FlowersExpo

Over the last year, many South American flower growers increased their volumes to Russia. They seem to be gaining back a bit of the market share that they lost in the crisis in 2015. Unfortunately, the ruble has been devaluating over the last weeks, worrying growers and their customers. At the FlowersExpo in Moscow, Russia, price is therefore again one of the main topics of discussion.

“The value of the ruble against the dollar decreased by 10 per cent in just a month or so”, say several South American growers who are exhibiting in the FlowersExpo. “It results in a large price increase for our customers.” In turn, many Russian buyers are therefore already asking for lower prices.

However, for many growers, lowering the price is not an option, as the devaluation of the ruble is an additional concern at the moment. The weather isn’t good either. Cold, rainy and dark days are decreasing the production volumes at many farms. So, lowering the price for their customers is not even possible.

According to many, the higher price is not the main problem, it is the fluctuation of the exchange rate that is making the Russian buyers hesitant. Russia remains a flower loving country, and they seem to have the money to buy, as long as the quality is high. “However, when the exchange rate is fluctuating, there can be a huge price difference in the order one week or the next.” But the demand for flowers remains high and growers keep seeing the potential to grow in this country. South America, represented by Ecuador and Colombia, is the largest flower supplier of the Russian market (about 50 percent).

At the FlowersExpo, South America is therefore, as usual, well presented; 49 companies from Ecuador and 29 companies from Colombia.

Ecuadorian rose growers Sabastian Padula and Martin Bedoya of Josarflor. 

Colombian rose grower Jorge Ortega of Matina Flowers.

Colombian rose growers Liliana Losetska, Jose Luis Suarez and Anna Lisetska of Circasia.

Ecuadorian rose growers Franklin Velez Gonzales and Maria Fernanda Troya of Natuflor.