Meantime, thanks to these two forward-thinking retailers which have a sustainable product supply chain in the front of their minds, rather than just the cheapest source, Harper, Upton & Morrison will be breaking new ground and developing innovative ways with their Kenyan partners in which the services of nature - water, soil, plants and animals - can be used sustainably for the greatest benefit to people at Lake Naivasha and in its catchment.
"It's over simplistic to say flowers should not be grown in Kenya and flown to Europe" Harper says, "this industry is a major employer in a country that is wholly economically dependent upon its earnings from what nature can provide - flowers, tea, coffee and wild animals. Growing food for Kenyans is also critically important, as the recent drought and famine in East Africa has shown - but the solution to these problems is the sustainable management of livestock and nature in those drier rangelands where periodic droughts are not new, it isn't growing more food hundreds of miles away from the problem. A combination of food for local consumption and export crops for money is the right way to achieve a sustainable society, which is what Kenya is moving towards at Lake Naivasha, with our help."
The Leicester group's findings were instrumental in making the lake a Ramsar site of international importance in the 1990s. Forthcoming research will assist the Prince of Wales' In
|Contact: Dr. David M. Harper|
University of Leicester