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IFTEX - An Event That Sustainably Cultivates Global Flower Connections

An occasion that presents an opportunity for all in the flower industry to engage and share insights on boosting this key trade.

By: BRIAN OKINDA | 28-02-2024 | 5 min read
Floral Events Flowers
IFTEX ​Sustainably Cultivates Global Flower Connections

For over a decade, the International Flower Trade Exhibition (IFTEX) has been - and continues to be - a lively and important event in the global floriculture and horticulture industries. Held annually in Nairobi, Kenya, IFTEX presents a dynamic platform for flower growers, exporters, importers, and all other industry professionals to converge, collaborate, and celebrate the beauty of flowers. 

This year is, certainly, no different! From June 4, 2024, this key international conference will be organized, with the key intention of chatting the way forward with regard to the latest developments in sustainability within the international cut flower industry and the urgency of addressing all challenges affecting it, to make a difference for all flower industry players worldwide. 

A Unified Message on Floral Sustainability

Notably, a unified and unequivocal message must be conveyed regarding cut flower cultivation's realities and the sustainability issue. The cut flower industry’s status appears at risk due to the absence of a collective response thus far, around specific issues. This is compounded by the proliferation of misinformation.

 

IFTEX ​Sustainably Cultivates Global Flower Connections
A visitor of the 2023 IFTEX.
Photo by CHRP JANE MUCHIRI

 

The repercussions of this reputational challenge are growing steadily, and there is a legitimate concern that they may reach a critical point beyond recovery. Consequently, the global industry must promptly rectify the issues that affect the flower industry before the situation becomes irreparable. 

In view of that, IFTEX organizers, HPP Worldwide which has more than 39 years of experience in organizing trade exhibitions all over the world, and has organized more than 180 exhibitions across 35 countries, are playing a vital role in safeguarding the well-being of this industry through the series of events.

 

​IFTEX ​Sustainably Cultivates Global Flower Connections
Kenyan grower Sian Flowers at IFTEX 2023
Photo by @sianflowerskenya

 

As a result, during the conference which runs from June 4th to 6th 2024, there will be discussions on floral sustainability at the event’s hall in Nairobi’s Oshwal Center. This has usually been the same venue hosting the IFTEX series of events in Kenya. The East African country is, after all, a giant in flower production and has continued to show its dedication to enhancing the flower industry.

Sustainability Is Imperative for a Flourishing Floral Future

The cut flower industry faces a critical challenge, particularly in the context of sustainability. There has been misrepresentation of this industry, especially around this topic, and a lack of collective action threatens the industry’s status. Basically, an absence of a unified response puts the industry’s future in difficulty. 

 

​IFTEX ​Sustainably Cultivates Global Flower Connections

Grower Red Lands Roses CEO Disha Copreaux, Kenya Flower Council CEO Clement Tulezi, and Njeri Kabeberi, the President and CEO of Wangari Maathai Foundation at IFTEX 2023. Red Lands Roses grows Rose Wangari Maathai in remembrance of the late Nobel Peace Prize laureate.

Photo by @wangari_maathai

 

The short conference preceding IFTEX 2024 will, therefore, address sustainability issues head-on. Attendees will discuss the realities of cut flower cultivation, the urgency in enhancing sustainable practices, the global impact of responsible flower trade, and why the global flower industry must, in togetherness, act fast to improve the situation and present a unified voice crucial for safeguarding the industry’s well-being.

Why IFTEX Matters

IFTEX provides a fertile ground for networking, knowledge exchange, and business transactions. At the conference, flower growers showcase their beautiful flowers; from the classic roses to other exotic and fascinating flower varieties including chrysanthemums, gypsophila, carnations, cymbidiums, orchids, and a whole wide world of blooms.

 

​IFTEX ​Sustainably Cultivates Global Flower Connections
AAA Growers Ltd's Farah Shamji (left) and Elgon Kenya Ltd's Bimal Kantaria at IFTEX 2023.
Photo by Bimal Kantaria

 

Through the event, exporters and importers have a platform to engage in and make trade deals that span continents, boosting flower business across the world. Also, industry professionals have the platform to discuss trends, innovations, and sustainable practices.

Flower enthusiasts, on the other hand, are afforded a firsthand opportunity to experience and appreciate all the beautiful flowers - and plants - grown anywhere across the world. Flowers, floriculture, and floristry are, after all, elements that go way beyond geographic boundaries.

 

​IFTEX ​Sustainably Cultivates Global Flower Connections
United Selections CEO, Jelle Posthumus (center) with guests at the IFTEX 2023.
Photo by United Selections

 

Did You Experience IFTEX 2023?

IFTEX 2023 witnessed an array of floral beauty as well as events and campaigns that sought to promote the flower trade and the flower industry’s interconnectivity across the world. Leading players in the flower industry presented what they had to offer when it comes to flowers and their production and delivery, making the event quite the success that it was.

(Now check out what Thursd did after the IFTEX 2023 as a tribute to the event and Kenya's flower industry.)

 

IFTEX ​Sustainably Cultivates Global Flower Connections
Grower PJ Dave Flowers' showcase at the last IFTEX.
Photo by Kenya Flower Council

 

This year, this flower festival promises nothing short of that! Going by all the indications in the world of flowers, IFTEX 2024 promises a lot more as more leading exhibitors are expected to showcase the finest of their floral offerings, and discussions that will positively influence the flower industry will definitely be held.

In short, as all pointers indicate, IFTEX 2024 is one worth making all the effort to attend. It will not just be a mere exhibition that celebrates the beauty of floral artistry, but also an opportunity for engagements that will strengthen the future of the global flower industry. 

 

IFTEX ​Sustainably Cultivates Global Flower Connections
Attendees present at the previous IFTEX.
Photo by Catherine Riungu

 

 

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