Airfreight Study Kenya

The Netherlands is a gateway to Europe and the Dutch economy depends ond the trade flows of also horticultural produce. However, there are indications that the airfreight situation from Kenya to the Netherlands, with respect to floriculture products,  is not optimal. Hortiwise has therefore, with the support of the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO), carried out a study on airfreight in the horticulture industry.

Airplane - cargo 2


The main reason for this study was to provide the market with insights in the current situation under which Kenyan flowers are transported to The Netherlands. Especially, after a meeting with the flower sector in February 2018 it was concluded that there is a need to gain more insight in developments and changes that affect aifreight from Kenya to the Netherlands. Based on a combination of both desk research and interviews with stakeholders, the study gives a status-update and recommendations on improvement measures.

Amsterdam is the main hub for Kenyan and South American flowers targeting the European market. Due to its hub function, the flow of incoming flowers has been relatively stable for the last years. However, Amsterdam airport’s popularity has a cost. At the moment a shortage of landing slots and flights is driving growers and freight operators to seek for alternatives. Distributors and logistical service providers are increasingly considering the set up of facilities near alternative airports. To analyse current developments, five types of logistical connections between Nairobi and Amsterdam are outlined in the report.

Trucks offloading JKIA


There are many factors which affect the airfreight between Kenya and the Netherlands. Amongst others, policy-related limitations and practical supply chain matters make that the conditions between the Netherlands and Kenya are not optimal. The logistical system is underperforming at the cost of the industry, the consumer and the environment. As one of the main recommendations, the study suggests that a logistics work group is set up in Kenya to analyse and address logistics performance issues. The work group should focus of current issues and reinforcing The Netherlands’ position with regard to Kenyan flower exports.

The study will be discussed in more detail during the Flower Logistics Africa conference. For any further questions or to share your input on the reccomendations kindly send an email to  

Find the full study here.