Transportation Costs of Fresh Flowers: A Comparison across Major Exporting Countries

Jun 2008
Exporting fresh flowers is one of very few successful efforts by producers in low-income countries to compete in international markets of high-value agricultural goods. While this success results from producers' ability to take advantage of their geographic location and access to low labor costs, it may not be sustainable in the long run due to unreliable supply chains and high transportation costs. Using a case study approach of Ecuador's supply chain, complemented by an empirical analysis of microdata on exports from major fresh flower exporting countries to the United States, this study confirms producers' claims that time and transportation costs vary widely across countries. This paper was presented at the Latin America/Caribbean and Asia/Pacific Economics and Business Association (LAEBA)'s 4th Annual Meeting held at Lima, Peru on June 17th, 2008.