An Environmental Evaluation of the Cut-Flower Supply Chain (Dendranthema grandiflora) Through a Life Cycle Assessment

Carmen Alicia Parrado Moreno, Ricardo Esteba Ricardo Hernández, Héctor Iván Velásquez Arredondo, Sergio Hernando Lopera Castro, Christian Hasenstab --


Colombia is a major flower exporter of a wide variety of species, among which the chrysanthemum plays a major role due to its exporting volume and profitability on the international market. This study examines the major environmental impacts of the chrysanthemum supply chain through a life cycle assessment (LCA). One kg of stems export quality was used as the functional unit (FU). The study examines cut-flowers systems from raw material extraction to final product commercialization for two markets (London and Miami) and analyzes two agroecosystems: one certified system and one uncertified system. The transport phase to London resulted in more significant environmental impacts than the transport phase to Miami, and climate change (GWP100) category was significant in both cities, generating values of 9.10E+00 and 2.51E+00 kg CO2-eq*FU for London and Miami, respectively. Furthermore, when exclusively considering pre-export phases, the uncertified system was found to have a greater impact than the certified system with respect to fertilizer use (certified 1,448E-02 kg*FU, uncertified 2.23E-01 kg*FU) and pesticide use (certified 1.24 E-04 kg*FU, uncertified 2.24E-03 kg*FU). With respect to the crop management, eutrophication (EP) and acidification (AP) processes imposed the greatest level of environmental impact. Strategies that would significantly reduce the environmental impact of this supply chain are considered, including the use of shipping and a 50% reduction in fertilizer use.

Palabras clave

Environmental analysis, floriculture, chrysanthemum, energy, certification systems, agroecosystem

Texto completo:



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