Colombian flower growers plan to grow blue roses and “mums” for export to Japan, radio station Caracol reported on Monday.
Agricultural authorities authorized the import of the reproductive parts of the flowers to Colombia, and permitted the experimental planting of a line of blue chrysanthemums.
According to Caracol Radio, this project is a result of research conducted by the Australian company Florigene, which is dedicated to the search for new plants using biotechnology. The company is part of the Japanese conglomorate Suntory.
In Japan, a bouquet of blue roses can cost up to US$500, while the unit cost is anywhere between US$40 – 50. The company estimates that the blue mums will be available for export in the next three years.
Colombia is the world’s second biggest exporter of flowers after Holland, and the majority of these products go to the U.S. and Europe.
In 2008, Colombia exported 223,000 tons of flowers, generating US$1.1 billion.