According to a report filed by Kenyan Newspaper, Business Daily, flower growers in the country have sent home nearly 20 percent of their casual workforce and sent a similar number on compulsory leave as the industry battles to survive the aftershocks of the coronavirus lockdown.
Cancellation of overseas orders and travel restrictions on affected countries has hit the industry hard with an estimated 40 percent plunge in sales forcing players to turn on their 150,000 workforce to save their companies from outright losses.
About 30,000 casual workers have been axed while over 40,000 permanent staff have been asked to go home with industry players warning that head count could drop to 20,000 in the next few weeks.
“Only 50 percent of our nationwide workforce is currently working with the percentage expected to plummet to 25 percent in the coming two to three weeks,” said Kenya Flower Council chief executive Officer Clement Tulezi.
“If things do not improve then we project employee headcounts to drop to 20,000.”
According to the regulator, the Agriculture, and Food Authority, Kenya’s earnings from horticulture exports including flowers, fruits and vegetable, fell 7 percent in 2019 to Sh142.72 from Sh154.7 billion, mainly due to lower prices of flowers at the auction in the Netherlands.
article courtesy: Business Daily