The Korea Agro-Fisheries Trade Corp. (aT) hosts an auction of Chunnan (Korean cymbidium goeringii orchids) at the Flowering Plant Joint Market in Seoul on June 24, 2015 for a one week run, which marks the first anniversary since it started the event. The aT opened a wholesale market at the Joint Market to popularize and revitalize the Chunnan orchids market which had been in doldrums since 2005. The Chunnan orchids are cultivated at the veranda in veranda horticulture.
According to President & CEO Kim Jae-su of aT, the open and transparent electronic auctioning for the Chunnan orchids will contribute to the establishment of a fair distribution system and broadening the base of the market for the increase of income of the Chunnan cultivators and create new jobs for the housewives, office workers and retirees.
Special meaning is attached to the fact that aT’s effort for the cultivation and distribution of the Chunnan orchids contributes to the creation of new jobs and revenue-yielding urban farming. So far, sale of the Chunnan orchids has been carried out quietly only among the Chunnan lovers.
The aT has formed a price-assessment organization in cooperation with Chunnan-related organizations to encourage fair transactions between the sellers and buyers and to improve a sense of trust between them. Under this system, the sellers are required to produce the cultivation records of the plant, which saves a lot of problems that are expected to happen at the time of sale of the orchids.
Last year, one potted Chunnan orchid sold for 105 million won (approx. US$100,000) and the total amount of money transacted at the auction totaled two billion won. A total of over 500 persons registered themselves for the auction.
Last year, the aT also hosted a training class for the cultivation beginners of the Korean Chunnan orchids and a total of over 70 persons completed the training course. Last April, the aT hosted a national Korean Chunnan orchids exhibition at the aT Center in cooperation with Chunnan-related organizations. A total of over 5,000 persons visited the exhibition, which contributed to bringing closer together the orchid lovers and ordinary citizens and to popularizing the Chunnan orders.
Thanks to the auctions, the prices of the Chunnan orchids have risen substantially by some 30 to 40 percent and the popularity of Chunnan has grown among the housewives and the office workers with the result that ‘Nan-Tech’ (money-making through transaction of Chunnan orchids) came into being.
The total amount of money involved in the transaction of Korean Chunnan orchids total some 250 billion won a year and the cultivating farmers of the orchids are estimated to total some 500,000. As a result of the auction, some of the rare type of the Korean Chunnan orchids is hard to find at the ordinary orchid market. The amount of transactions and number of cultivators have also increased substantially.
The aT plans to further endeavor to expand the cultivation and distribution of the Korean Chunnan orchids, especially for the medium- and low-priced ones so that they could dispense with the need for importing foreign orchids.
The aT will also promote the export of popular Korean Chunnan orchids to China, Japan and other countries.
Director Lee Jong-kean of Future Growth Department of aT said, “We will lead the popularizing and industrializing the Korean Chunnan orchids through training and national exhibitions in cooperation with Chunnan-related organizations. k
Left photo shows a Chunnan orchids being auctioned at the Flower Plant Market in Seoul.
Right photo shows an exhibition of potted Chunnan orchids