Taiwan International Orchid Show is assisting the local industry fulfill its potential while showcasing growers' capabilities in orchid breeding and cultivation.

Kicking off March 12 at Taiwan Orchid Plantation in Tainan City, TIOS comprises business matchmaking, an orchid competition, exhibition and related symposiums. A total of 2,800 buyers from 24 countries and territories are attending this year's edition, with visitor numbers expected to hit 200,000 by the final day March 21.

ROC Premier Chang San-cheng said at the opening ceremony that the plants exhibited at TIOS, especially Oncidium and Phalaenopsis orchids, are among Taiwan's key agricultural exports.

"Last month's decision by the U.S. to greenlight imports of Taiwan Oncidium orchids potted in growing media further creates more business opportunities for local growers, while strengthening the industry's competitiveness in the international marketplace."

According to the Council of Agriculture, sales at TIOS are forecast to generate more than NT$10 billion (US$304.2 million) in production over three years starting from 2016. The latest COA statistics revealed that Taiwan orchid exports stood at US$177 million in 2015, with 31 percent sent to the U.S.

"The government is not resting on its laurels," Chang said. "We will continue promoting the Taiwan Agricultural and Food Traceability System ensuring the quality of orchids and further combine biotechnology and information and communications technology to take the industry to a new level."

Founded in 2005, TIOS is one of the largest of its kind in the world. It ranks alongside Japan Grand Prix International Orchid Festival in Tokyo and World Orchid Conference.

Source: Taiwan Today