In Colombia, the production and sale of plants such as anthuriums, bromeliads, cacti, orchids, succulents, and forest plants, among others, positively impact the lives of more than 35,000 families mainly settled in rural areas throughout the country. The Netherlands, the most important player in the field of ornamental plants, fresh flowers, and foliage, has been supporting small nursery growers in Colombia, seeking to develop all their productive and commercial potential.
In alliance with Colviveros, the Association of Colombian Nursery Growers, the Government of the Netherlands recently supported an international mission. Eighteen Colombian growers participated last June in the GreenTech fair and in visits to the main varietal houses during the "FlowerTrials 2023". "Broadening the vision around the potential of their nursery business, learning about new products and trends, and opening opportunities to meet international demand are part of the objectives of these sorts of activities," says Jairo Cadavid, president of Colviveros
But beyond this initiative, the Netherlands will be the guest country of ExpoPlantas 2023, the trade and professional nursery convention that reaches its fifth edition and will be held in Bogotá from September 20 to 22, 2023, also with the support of the Colombian Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, the Chamber of Commerce of Bogotá and the Society of Landscape Architects of Colombia, among others. In this event that will occupy 3,140 square meters of Compensar's Jubilee Square in Bogotá, about twenty Dutch companies that supply plant material and inputs for the nursery chain will join the national suppliers that will participate in this commercial and training event for small growers and marketers of live plants in the country.
Léontine Crisson, agricultural advisor of the Kingdom of the Netherlands for Colombia, Peru, and Ecuador, indicated that Holland has been invited as the guest of honor of this important commercial platform that is reaching its fifth edition. "Since Colviveros was established in 2016, we have collaborated with the lived plants segment because, beyond the obvious relationship, this sector has a lot of development potential. At ExpoPlantas, we will participate in a pavilion with 10 Dutch companies along with Holland House, together with other companies that have an exhibition on their own. We will likewise support this effort by Colviveros with speakers who will address issues related to associativity, marketing, and plant breeders' rights," added the Dutch representative.
The contribution of the Netherlands is very important to support a new association that wants to promote the formalization and, therefore, the growth of producers to position themselves in a better way. And in this sense, the trajectory and experience of the Netherlands is important, but also, ExpoPlantas is consolidating itself as a trend commercial platform.
From the domestic market to the international arena
On the other hand, beyond promoting the local market with training and support activities focused on the formalization of the nursery sector, Colviveros has been working with entities such as ICA, the Colombian Phytosanitary Agency, to promote exports of live plants from Colombia. And although the initial export figures are modest, the window is opening, and the country's nursery growers await the prompt implementation of a Government Resolution by which new conditions for the import and exports of plant propagation materials into the country will be established.
"We have found full support from ICA and its officials towards this transformative vision of the nursery segment. We see in the Institute an organization that facilitates processes, responds and understands the new international context and does not get stuck in old models," pointed out the president of Colviveros.