Worldwide trends in horticulture: Can you keep up?

Worldwide trends in horticulture: Can you keep up?

The first worldwide trend we discuss here is the concern for responsible waste management. Kenya is the 4th largest worldwide flower exporting country and continues to grow over the years (Kenya Flower Council, 2019). Kenyan flowers account for 35% of European flower sales. This simultaneously results in a growing amount of floral waste also.

With this development the need for responsible waste management becomes more important. The worldwide flower industry is currently developing methods to reuse flower disposals for good purposes. The waste management trend is followed by the Food Safety trend, which is of major importance for fruit and vegetable growers.

Floral waste; how to manage it?

Flower dumping in water is an important source of environmental pollution. In India e.g. flowers are left in temples to honor the gods, these same flowers are later dumped in rivers. This can lead to an ecological hazard, caused by the chemicals used in the flower growing process, and risk for algae growth which disturbs the ecological system in the water threatening organisms in the water (BBC News, 2019). This situation is not only disastrous for growers using this water for irrigation. It is even live threatening for people who bath in the same waters or even drink it. Several initiatives were introduced worldwide to process flower leftovers for other purposes e.g. to produce incense sticks from the residual product, simultaneously creating extra employment for local citizens.

Use floral waste for the good

Decomposing flowers are a pollution hazard on land as well. Floral waste, however has a tremendous potential of being converted into wealth by using simple and inexpensive technologies. With a collective effort, the wounded flowers can not only be gainfully used but can also generate employment. Flower waste can be reused and recycled in numerous ways; firstly using flower leftovers as compost for plants, secondly the leftovers can be processed into pigments or dyes used in the fashion industry, not to forget it can be processed into biofuel. (BBC News, 2019) Please note a similar approach also applies to overproduction in the food industry. If growers would invest more in waste management, this can have a major impact on solving the world food shortage problem. Last, but definitely not least: “Food Safety”

An estimated 91 million people in Africa in a year consume contaminated food that renders them ill, and around 137,000 people die. Food containing harmful bacteria, viruses, parasites or chemical substances cause diseases ranging from acute diarrhoea to lifelong conditions (WHO, 2019).

Control on food quality

Africa’s domestic and regional markets for food are growing, with food safety as a serious topic of concern. The need for strict control on growing conditions increases in order to meet up with the higher food safety standards. Horticulture automation solutions enable growers to control growing conditions on every aspect you can possibly think of. This automated growth process enables growers to increase product quality, opening up possibilities for export, as the products have a longer shelf life.

The African government has a growing concern for food safety, to prevent foodborne deseases encouraged a.o. by the listeria outbreak last year. This will most likely also impact the horticultural sector in Africa in the years to come. Therefore, it is important to have your production process automated in time, to be prepared for what comes in terms of government regulations regarding food safety.

Your local partners in horticulture

Do you need advice on finding a solution for limiting use of chemicals in your greenhouse? Or help in finding a smart approach to waste management? Hoogendoorn Growth Management and Bosman-Van Zaal can help you. Bosman-Van Zaal is located in Africa with offices in Kenia, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Egypt and South Africa for local support and advice.

For more information on horticulture automation solutions check

For information on turnkey greenhouse solutions check

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