PUNJAB, PAKISTANRoses are one of the leading cut flowers in the global floriculture trade. In the last few years, cut flower consumption and the market for high-quality flowers has increased in Pakistan as a result of the country's rapid economic growth, improved living standards, enhanced access to electronic media, and increasing demand from the country's growing hospitality industry.
In Pakistan, where seasonable climatic conditions provide ideal environments for cut flowers, rose production generates employment opportunities in rural areas where few other jobs exist. But industry challenges, including a lack of standardized production techniques, limited availability of greenhouses, and lack of professional education for growers, are delaying efforts to put Pakistan on the map as a cut flower exporter. A study published in HortTechnology reported on the present status and future prospects of cut rose flower production and postharvest management in Punjab, Pakistan. The researchers found that although cut roses were the leading flower crop in the area, production systems and practices were outdated and primitive, and the quality of cut stems produced was not acceptable in international markets.
While all of the growers interviewed for the study reported that they sold their products in local markets in Pakistan, none said they exported their flowers. Producers indicated that they were limited to local sales because of factors such as lack of cooperation from government organizations, ignorance of international standards, and poor-quality production. "The growers with limited or no education felt that their product quality was too low to allow exporting, whereas more educated growers felt that the lack of support from the government prevented them from exporting", said Iftikhar Ahmad, an assistant professor in the Institute of Horticultural Sciences, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan (who conducted the survey) and J
|Contact: Michael W. Neff|
American Society for Horticultural Science