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Colombian flower grower wins top award in US

The youngest member of the executive board of the Colombian Association of Flower Exporters (Asocolflores), Carlos Manuel Uribe Lalinde, has just been recognized with one of the highest awards in that industry.

The 42-year-old businessman is the president of Flores El Capiro, member of the American Academy of Floriculture (AAF) and chairman of the board of Asocolflores.

He is known as an innovator, entrepreneur and pioneer in certain aspects of the activity. Uribe received the AAF award, which is usually granted only to American people, for his contributions to the sector.

The award was granted at the 130th annual convention of the Society of American Florists (SAF), held in Marco Island, Florida.

The executive says that this is a recognition to Colombian floriculture, which motivates him to continue with this activity in the country. Uribe started out in the business about 15 years ago. He has developed, among other things, a container system to send flowers (chrysanthemums) by ship from Colombia to distant countries such as Australia.

The entrepreneur made the decision of using sea transport as a consequence of the crisis caused by the revaluation of the Colombian peso against the dollar, which forced flower growers to look for new markets and to save production costs.

In the case of Australia, the distance and transport time (at least 22 days) requires that the product undergoes a process of devitalization, which consists in putting the flowers that are ready for packing in buckets with a special solution to disinfect them from fungi, virus or bacteria.

“Carlos has revolutionized the transport of flowers”, said Gonzalo Aristizábal, manager of Cultivos Miramonte. This executive also considers that Uribe has positioned Flores El Capiro in the high-quality level required in the U.S. and other markets.

Uribe has also held managerial posts at Fundaflor and the International Flower Trade Association (Union Fleurs), and he was a member of the SAF’s Board of Directors in 2013. He has an MBA from Southern New Hampshire University. His career has also been recognized by the British supermarket chain Tesco and the Dutch Flower Group in Holland, among others.

Author: Translated by Daltry Gárate for Hortibiz


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