The annual Taiwan International Orchid Show held last month in Tainan County has received more than NT$2.4 billion (US$78.7 million) in export orders, a 65 percent increase from last year, Tainan County Commisioner Su Huan-chih (蘇煥智) said yesterday.
Su said the show attracted more than 200,000 local and foreign visitors as well as 2,000-plus buyers from 24 countries during its 10-day run which ended on March 17.
Some of the orders for several species or patented species were in the quantity of millions, Su said.
This year, the American Orchid Society, which was asked to send officials to the show to serve as judges, broke a record for the number of orchid plants awarded the highest honors, said Lee Chang-yu (
Lee said that six orchid plants received first class certificates from the US society, breaking the society's record.
The US group usually awards about a dozen such certificates a year.
This year was also the first in which US judges awarded more than four of the top certificates at a single show since its establishment in the 1920s.
Taiwan exported NT$1.84 billion worth of orchids in 2006, a year-on-year increase of 24.1 percent, with butterfly orchids, or phalaenopsis, accounting for NT$1.15 billion of the total, customs statistics show.
Total orchid export orders secured at the orchid show totaled NT$800 million in 2005, NT$1 billion in 2006 and NT$1.5 billion this year, figures compiled by the Tainan County Government show.