Exports of Australian grown flowers began in the late 1980s. Since then, Australia has become a major participant the expanding global cut flower market, exporting niche flower products.
Australia’s exports mostly consist of natives such as waxflower, kangaroo paw, and banksias as well as protea. These varieties are immensely popular among overseas florists and customers. China alone buys as many natives as Australia can supply.
In FY2020, the official value of cut flowers exported from Australia was about AU$8.4 million. This figure may be higher, depending on data capture and reporting methodologies.
Australia’s main export markets are Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, China, Taiwan, Korea, the USA, Canada, and Europe.
Local wildflower growers rely on the export market for a large portion of their income because the Australian market is too small to achieve any scale and prices are sensitive to oversupply.
Exports of plant product are overseen by the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment which administers the Export Control Act 2020. The department creates rules to control exports, which encompass plant product and other agricultural proscribed goods such as fruit and vegetables.