Can Taiwan transform itself into an orchid kingdom in the near future? The floriculture community in Taiwan has had this ambitious dream for many years and a positive turn toward such a possibility has just taken place this week.
About two years ago, a plan was launched by the government to build a permanent exhibition site and trading center for local orchid growers. The plan has come to fruition and is about to put to be put to the test, starting from tomorrow.
If it proves successful and the large-scale international orchid exhibition is a success, then Taiwan, the world's leading exporter country of orchids, might be viewed as the natural home of the magnificent
The government has poured billions of NT dollars into developing the Taiwan Orchid Plantation (TOP) project in Hobi (
The plantation has an area of 200 hectares and is scheduled to be completed in 2008.
Beginning tomorrow, the fourth international orchid show -- the largest annual orchid exhibit in Taiwan -- will be held at the plantation.
With 15 participating countries, this multi-national floral exhibit will showcase more than a thousand orchids to the public, until April 10.
Cosponsored by the Tainan County Government and Council of Agriculture, this 14-day event expects to attract approximately half a million flower lovers from all over Taiwan and abroad.
Three major areas will feature different varieties of orchids, flower arrangements and landscape design. Handicrafts with orchids, the chance to experience the fragrance of the flowers and other attractions will be enjoyed by visitors. There will even be a section devoted to orchid stamps from around the world.
The award-winning Orchid Exhibition Hall (
The Sales Booth Hall (
According to Su Mao-shiang (蘇茂祥), an official from the Agriculture and Food Agency, at the Council of Agriculture, Taiwan is the world's largest exporting country of orchids, with Japan, North America, Europe and Hong Kong as its major markets. The flowers bring in an annual income of around US$60 millions for the country.
Stiff competition is coming but Su says Taiwan maintained a comfortable lead in the global orchid market and captured a 77 percent share last year.
What: Taiwan International Orchid Show 2005
Where: Taiwan Orchid Plantation (台灣蘭花生物科技園區), Hobi (後壁), Tainan County
When: March 26 to April 10
Tickets: NT$150 per person
Telephone: (06) 6840 684