NAIROB-KENYA: Global floriculture enterprise, Primarosa Flower Limited has moved all its operations to its Nyahururu firm, as an expansion plan that will see production increase by 20 percent year on year.
According to Virag Joshi, Chief Executive Officer, Primarosa Flower Limited, the move has been influenced by the recent drought situation that has seen the company suffer from acute water shortage, thus increasing operational expenditure of buying water, to sustain production of roses.
“By end of April, we will be moving our Athi-River operations to Nyahururu as a result of the recent droughts that have witnessed an increase in the spend on water, as a resource, since it is very crucial for the production of our roses. Moving to our Nyahururu farm will therefore enable us to increase our production by over 20 percent because of the favourable climatic conditions necessary for growing roses, “said Mr. Joshi.
The farm’s water reservoir has been completely depleted. For the last few months, the company has been sustaining the flower farm by purchasing borehole water to sustain the production. The company has been operating on its six reservoirs and underground tanks combining a collection capacity of over 380 cubic meters of water which is now exhausted.
However, the borehole water poses a threat to the quality and quantity of flowers being produced, irrespective of increased financial expenses towards tedious water fetching and transportation processes.
Since 2003, the farm has been able to maintain a self-sustaining, eco-friendly environment for the natural and pesticide-free growth of flowers through green-house technology, despite Athi-River area, being a semi-arid environment.
Meanwhile, as part of its expansion plan, Primarosa will also be looking at new farms around Nyahururu to increase its current export of over 100 million roses, which is achievable due to favourable weather conditions, around the region.
On the other hand, Mr. Joshi said that the company will not be laying off any of its staff during the transition process to Nyahururu:
“We adequately gave a one-month notice to our staff in March, informing them about the relocation of our operations to Nyahururu. None of them will be layed off; and those who will voluntarily not move with us will be sufficiently compensated according to the terms of their contracts.”
He also stated that the company requires more employees during this expansion process and that more people will have an opportunity to earn a livelihood as the company progresses towards growth and expansion.
“We are currently employing over 1500 employees in all our farms and with this expansion process will be able to employ another 20 percent more. Primarosa therefore would like to immensely contribute to the socio-economic development of this country, through this initiative. “
At the same time, Primarosa leads & offers significant economic projects including soft loans for the staff’s children/s education, computer lab projects to teach the staff basic computer skills and the art of ‘bee keeping.’ The company also invests in training their staff appropriately and enable them to understand the pollination process of roses and other elements of the natural environment, in the field of agricultural expansion and enhance their knowledge in the floriculture business.
Early this month, Seychelles President, His Excellency Danny Faure visited Primarosa in a move that will see Seychelles import roses from the firm in a trade agreement with Kenya.