Selasa, 01 Agustus 2017

FLORICULTURE FESTIVAL MARKS REVIVAL OF INDONESIAN FLORICULTURE by Fardah

Jakarta, Aug 1, 2017 (Antara) - A series of activities highlighting the Indonesian Floriculture Festival 2017, organized in Jakarta on July 24-29, marked the revival of floriculture as one of the country's economic assets.
           Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Darmin Nasution officially designated July 24, as Indonesian Floriculture Day at his office on that day.
           On July 28, a seminar on national floriculture was organized at the Bogor University of Agriculture (IPB) Convention Center. On July 29, the Indonesian Floriculture Expo was held at the Baranangsiang Campus of IPB and was officiated by Mufidah, the spouse of Vice President Jusuf M. Kalla.
           On July 30, Bogor hosted the Floriculture Carnival, and IPB Rector Herry Suhardiyanto declared the "Love Indonesian Floriculture" Movement to encourage sustainability and promotion of the floriculture sector.
            The events were organized by the office of Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs in cooperation with the agriculture ministry, the IPB, and the Bogor municipality, Dr Syarifah IIs Aisyah, chairperson of the organizing committee, stated.
        Tens of flower-decorated vehicles went around the city, including to the Bogor Botanical Garden, during the carnival, which was officially kicked off by Bogor Mayor Bima Arya Sugiarto and his deputy, Usmar Hariman.
        Other activities highlighting the carnival were an agricultural and culinary bourse, flower arrangement contest, fashion show, talk show, marching band competition, and flower-decorated vehicle contest. Indonesian flowers were used in all the activities.

        This year's Indonesian Floriculture Expo is aimed at reviving the floriculture industry in Indonesia.
          While opening the expo at the IPB campus, Mufidah expressed hope that the revival of Indonesia's floriculture business would begin and be able to compete internationally.
        "Indonesia has huge potential in the floriculture field, which has an important role in the nation's economic development," she noted.
           Indonesia has been acknowledged by scientists as one of the world's centers of mega biodiversity for its abundant species of flora and fauna and a wide range of natural habitats.
           According to data compiled by the Indonesian forestry ministry, the country's forests are a habitat for 38 thousand plant species, including 27,500 species of floral plants, or 10 percent of the world's floral plants.
        IPB Rector Prof. Herry Suhardiyanto remarked that on an average, the production and productivity of Indonesia's floriculture agribusiness had increased by 27 percent every year. The floricultural planting area increased by 15 percent annually, and its contribution to the gross domestic product went up by 12 percent.
         Indonesia earned US$20 million from floriculture exports, and 750 thousand people worked in the floriculture sector.
          "Several tropical flowers having potential commercial value include orchids, heliconia, and celosia," Suhardiyanto pointed out.
         He believed it is time for the floriculture sector to become the backbone of the country's agricultural sector and economic development.
         Despite the fact that Indonesia has huge floriculture potential, the nation is still facing several problems in developing the business.
          Among the problems are serious damage to the production environment, lack of supporting infrastructure and facilities, poor land ownership, limited access to capital funding, and lack of coordination among supporting sectors needed for the development of the floriculture agribusiness.
         "The IPB is concerned about these problems. Together we should boost Indonesia's floriculture by involving the government, academicians, and business sectors. The media also plays a role in promoting Indonesian flora," he remarked.
          Indonesia is believed to have huge potential to become one of the world's largest flower and fruit exporters, as the country has been blessed with fertile land as well as fruits and flowers that are abundant, both qualitatively and quantitatively.     
    Owing to the country's germplasm diversity and tropical climate, floriculture and horticulture commodities can grow well and consequently contribute significantly to the nation's economic growth.
         The Indonesian Floriculture Expo, initially called the Nusantara Flora and Fruit Festival, has been organized regularly by the Bogor University of Agriculture since 2013 at the initiative of the office of the Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs and in cooperation with the Agriculture Ministry, the Indonesian Flower Association, and several regional and provincial governments.       
   In 2015, President Joko Widodo had suggested to upgrade the festival to an international event and to be developed into two separate events: one for fruits and the other for flowers.
        "The objective is to make the events more focused," Aisyah said.    
    Indonesia's main export flower varieties are orchids, roses, jasmines, chrysanthemum, and tuberoses.
        However, floricultural trade in Indonesia remains relatively small despite the size of the country and the potential volume of flowers for exports that could be produced.
         Existing flower production centers are split among six key regions of Indonesia: Jabotabek, North Sumatra, Riau, East Java, West Java, and Central Java.

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