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Flower Festival Returns to Largo da Restauração

The Exhibition and the Regional Flower Production Competition, which are part of the Flower Festival, initiatives under the responsibility of the Regional Secretariat for Agriculture and Environment, through the Regional Directorate for Agriculture and Rural Development, returns this year to Largo da Restauração, with the estimated presence of 111 exhibitors.

Running from the 2nd to the 26th of May, the Flower Festival exhibition and competition aims, according to Marco Caldeira, Regional Director of Agriculture and Rural Development, “to recognise the work developed by professionals in the sector, but also the dedication of the people of Madeira and Porto Santo to the cultivation of plants and flowers.”

This year, in its 69th edition, with the theme ‘Sausage Floral Motifs,’ Largo da Restauração returns to its former glory as the centre stage for the celebrations as cut and potted flowers, as well as floral arrangements, which will be evaluated in their various categories and appraised by a jury of specialised judges.

The Region “has an immense botanical heritage, with a significant richness, which must be disseminated, especially among young farmers, to guarantee its cultivation and perpetuate its existence for the future. It is, however, necessary to promote modernisation and innovation, in order to safeguard the greater stability of regional floriculture, with more and better production, and to the interest of producers,” pointed out Marco Caldeira.

During the 69th Exhibition and the Regional Flower Production Competition, we highlight the activities associated with the event, such as the Floral Arrangement Competitions, for amateurs and professionals, and the study visits of the trainees of the Agricultural School of Madeira.

Strategic guidelines for floriculture

In this perspective, and because the capacity for entrepreneurship and innovation are fundamental to ensure the sustainability and competitive capacity of the regional floriculture, the Regional Secretariat for Agriculture and Environment, through the Regional Directorate for Agriculture and Rural Development, gives strategic guidelines for the regional floriculture to carry out a deep intervention in the space of the current Floriculture Centre, located in Lugar de Baixo, in the municipality of Ponta do Sol, converting it into the Madeira Flower Interpretive Centre (CIF), which, in addition to reinforcing the role of the Floriculture Centre in the scope of experimentation and research in subtropical floriculture, rehabilitating and improving existing facilities. A new valence, that of a space for learning about the main regional flower species, aimed at the general population, but also for the many tourists who visit us, providing a place of leisure and fun for all visitors.

Another strategy is to ensure the normal functioning of MICROLAB Madeira, a laboratory unit specialized in the multiplication of plants in vitro, and to continue research and experimentation applied to the in vitro production of plant species with potential interest for regional agriculture, with greater productivity and adaptation to market demands.

To support and promote the production and marketing of regional flowers, through the holding of specific events (information and/or demonstration sessions, dissemination actions, fairs and exhibitions) and the production of content in paper and/or digital format, to enhance the visibility and placing on the market of regional flowers and create the necessary conditions for strengthening the competitive capacity of the regional floriculture sector, Whether through greater proximity and reinforcement of technical support, or through the sharing of up-to-date technical information, providing all stakeholders with the knowledge and tools to keep up with current demands and trends, are other of the two strategies.

Finally, establish partnerships and protocols with other entities and/or educational establishments, to strengthen research and innovation, thus promoting innovation and qualification in the sector.

The Regional Government also intends to provide the Madeira and Porto Santo population with the necessary seeds so that in all gardens and balconies the colours and perfumes that make Madeira, the “island of flowers,” flourish.

Samantha Gannon

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