Ethiopia: Energy crisis in Europe boosts flower exports

Due to limited output in Europe, flower shipments to European countries have skyrocketed in recent months. Europe’s energy crisis, brought on by the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, has wreaked havoc on the floral industry of European countries.

Lighting and heating costs for greenhouses in nations like the Netherlands, one of Europe’s major producers of fresh flowers and vegetables, are getting quite high. Some farmers are simply giving up, while others are having trouble keeping up with declining yields. The executive board of the Ethiopian Horticulture Producers and Exporters Association welcomes the new development.

The Association’s executive director, Tewodros Zewdie, said that the crisis in European countries is bringing opportunities for Ethiopia, making the product the second biggest source of foreign currency next to coffee.

“The growers in Europe are now facing an energy crisis, which is an opportunity for us. Our air freight cost is even better than other producing countries like Kenya,” Tewodros said. “With the existence of Ethiopian Airlines and the strength of farms, we are in a better place now.”

During the first quarter of the current fiscal year, Ethiopia generated over USD 977 million from exports, achieving just 87 percent of the plan the government envisioned for the same period. Coffee exports accounted for more than 43 percent of total export income during the period, with 20,853 tons of coffee exported worth USD 426 million.

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