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Flower Farms and Kenya's Sustainable Development - Bruno Leipold, Francesca Morgante

Flower Farms and Kenya's Sustainable Development - Bruno Leipold, Francesca Morgante

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Published by Bruno Leipold
A research project on the impact of the flower industry on Kenya's sustainable development.

Abstract:
The Kenya Flower Industry is one of the largest in the world, but has been criticized for poor labour and environmental standards. We investigate these claims using data collected during research in Kenya from August – September 2010. Our investigation is divided into social,environmental and economic impacts to reflect the three aspects of sustainable development. We find that accreditation bodies have had a significant effect in improving working conditions, but that wages remain low and freedom of association is often limited. Furthermore we find that the farms are having a detrimental effect on the environment particularly on Lake Naivasha and urgent action is required to reverse this trend. We conclude with a recommendation for Western consumers to buy Fairtrade and other accredited flowers and to pressure their governments to legislate forcing companies and retailers to source their flowers from such accredited farms
A research project on the impact of the flower industry on Kenya's sustainable development.

Abstract:
The Kenya Flower Industry is one of the largest in the world, but has been criticized for poor labour and environmental standards. We investigate these claims using data collected during research in Kenya from August – September 2010. Our investigation is divided into social,environmental and economic impacts to reflect the three aspects of sustainable development. We find that accreditation bodies have had a significant effect in improving working conditions, but that wages remain low and freedom of association is often limited. Furthermore we find that the farms are having a detrimental effect on the environment particularly on Lake Naivasha and urgent action is required to reverse this trend. We conclude with a recommendation for Western consumers to buy Fairtrade and other accredited flowers and to pressure their governments to legislate forcing companies and retailers to source their flowers from such accredited farms

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Categories:Types, Research
Published by: Bruno Leipold on Apr 08, 2011
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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07/16/2013

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The Impact of the FlowerIndustry on Kenya'sSustainable Development 
By Bruno Leipold and Francesca MorganteUniversity of Warwick 
Sponsored by 
The Reinvention Centre and the University of Warwick Economics Department 
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Acknowledgments: 
This report shows only a fraction of the incredible experience we had carrying out thisresearch project in Kenya and traveling between Nairobi, Isinya, Nakuru and Naivasha. Wewould like to sincerely thank the institutions without which we would not have been able tohave the financial means to complete the research: the Reinvention Center and the University of Warwick Department of Economics. They offered an invaluable opportunity for us andother undergraduate students and we hope that despite the current budget cuts they will beable to provide at least partial funding for future eager young researchers. We would like toshow our appreciation to the Warwick International Development Summit (WIDS) which hasprovided an important platform to disseminate our results.The preparatory stages of the research greatly benefited from the input of a number of Warwick University staff members, in particular Andrew Walton, for sharing his expertise onthe Fairtrade industry and helping us shape the focus of our research, and Rocco Macchiavellofor his crucial insights into the Kenya Flower Industry.On the ground research would not have been possible without Jane Ngige’s hospitality andhelp in getting our feet into the works of the Kenya Flower Industry; nor without the help of Peter Otieno, representative of the Naivasha branch of the Kenya Plantation and AgriculturalWorkers Union (KPAWU), who mobilized groups of farm workers for us to interview, andappreciate the industry from the workers’ perspective.
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Abstract 
The Kenya Flower Industry is one of the largest in the world, but has been criticized for poorlabour and environmental standards. We investigate these claims using data collected during research in Kenya from August – September 2010. Our investigation is divided into social,environmental and economic impacts to reflect the three necessary aspects of sustainabledevelopment. We find that accreditation bodies have had a significant effect in improving working conditions, but that wages remain low and freedom of association is often limited.Furthermore we find that the farms are having a detrimental effect on the environment particularly on Lake Naivasha and urgent action is required to reverse this trend. Weconclude with a recommendation for Western consumers to buy Fairtrade and otheraccredited flowers and to pressure their governments to legislate forcing companies andretailers to source their flowers from such accredited farms.Keywords:
Flower Industry, Kenya, Sustainable Development, Economics, Fairtrade.
Acronyms
 
AEA - Agricultural Employers AssociationBOPP - British Ornamental Plants ProducersDFID - Department for International Development ETI - Ethical Trading InitiativeFFP - Fair Flowers Fair PlantsFKE - Federation of Kenya EmployersFLO - Fair Trade Labeling OrganizationFPEAK - Fresh Produce Export Association of Kenya Global-GAP - Global Good Agricultural PracticesKEWWO - Kenya Women Workers UnionKFC - Kenya Flower CouncilKPAWU - Kenya Plantations and Agricultural Workers UnionLNGG - Lake Naivasha Growers GroupMPS - Milieu Programma Sierteelt (Floriculture Environmental Project)NEMA - National Environmental Management Authority PPE - Personal Protective Equipment 
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