Air freight costs for Kenyan flowers have risen steeply in the past eighteen months. Transport by sea may be an alternative. Hortiwise investigated the possibilities of sea freight on behalf of the Dutch embassy in Nairobi. ‘If Kenya does not embrace sea freight, it will lose its leading position in flowers’, is one of the conclusions.
The sea freighting of flowers is not new for Kenya. Containers with Kenyan flowers have been crossing the ocean since 2005. The need for sea freight seems to have increased recently however. Because of the Corona crisis, air freight capacity has shrunk, making the air transport of Kenyan flowers much more expensive. Moreover, prices for air freight are projected to remain high for some time, turning sea transport into a cheaper alternative.
Also, buyers of flowers and plants are making ever stricter demands on the sustainability of production and transport. How much longer will consumers or retailers accept that flowers are being flown around the world, resulting in a high CO2 footprint, if maritime transport can reduce CO2 emissions by 85%? Sea freighting may also open up new markets for Kenyan growers, such as the Middle and Far East. (..)
Click here to read the full article in Floribusiness magazine.
Click here for a free sbuscription to Floribusiness magazine.