Ethiopia became the fifth largest non-EU flower exporter to the EU market and the second-largest exporter from Africa. Fertilizers and pesticides used extensively in the industry have been linked to negative environmental and health impacts. The cross-sectional study was conducted to assess social and environmental concerns witnessed by nearby inhabitants of flower farms from April 8 to June 02/2019 using questionnaires, focus group discussion (FGD), and field visits. The data was analysed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) software version 16. This study revealed that 161(26.79%), 317 (52.75%), and 25(4.16%) of sample HHs reported that flower farms are disposing of their flower residue by burning in their compound, by disposing of in the open field, and by burying in their compound, respectively. Also, the result showed that 216(36%) buy or receive empty chemical bags and containers which they use it to fetch and store water (69.91%), for house shade (7.87%), to make and store traditional liquor (14.35%), and for sale (7.41%), respectively. FGD participants perceived the decrease in volume and quality of groundwater, a decrease in productivity, land degradation, and increased emerging diseases. In addition, they reported abuse of employee rights, displacement of farmers from fertile land, death of cattle and fish, loss of acceptance for their agricultural and fish products. In general, it was reported that there are a poor waste management and unsustainable activities by the flower farms. The government should closely monitor these farms and undergo a holistic study to quantify environmental and local inhabitant’s opportunity costs of flower farming activity.
Published Date: 2021-01-27; Received Date: 2020-12-22