The prospect of exporting Malaysian temperate cut flowers by sea shipment to Japan

Floriculture is one of the lucrative industries in Malaysia. It is being emphasised in National Agriculture Policy to be promoted as one of the potential industries in Malaysia. Japan is the major import market for Malaysian dried flowers. Japan is also the second major importer of tropical orchids, temperate cut flowers and dried foliages from Malaysia. The cut flower imports by Japan have indicated an increasing trend. Before the use of sea shipment, Holland was the major supplier of cut flowers to Japan. However, the price is higher as compared to that of other
suppliers. Due to the price factor and the freshness of the flowers, Japan prefers to outsource the floricultural products from neighbouring countries, including Malaysia. Chrysanthemum is the most popular cut flower in Japan. Due to good market potential of chrysanthemums, sea shipment trials to Japan were conducted in 2002-2003 to explore the opportunity of reducing the transportation cost. The results of the trials showed that the transportation costs of cut chrysanthemums from Cameron Highlands to Fukuoka, Japan was RM0.43 and RM0.42 per stalk in summer and in winter, respectively. The transportation cost for winter was cheaper as all flowers delivered were in good condition and well accepted by the auction markets. The average air shipment cost per stalk was at RM0.79. Hence, delivery via sea will reduce the transportation cost by 88% and 84% in winter and summer, respectively.


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