Nini is a medium-sized fairtrade flower farm in Naivasha. It spans 23 hectares and employs over 500 permanent staff, 60% of whom have been at the farm for over 10 years.
All staff are permanent rather than day labourers and receive benefits and four months of training. Women make up 80% of the workforce; they tend to do the picking, sorting and bunching, while men are responsible for the spraying and transporting.
Flower cutters earn approximately 2,000 Kenyan shillings a day (nearly £15), but this varies considerably between farms. According to Nini’s human resources department, a typical working day lasts 7.5 hours, but employees say they typically work two hours more than this, mostly for no additional pay.
Most staff at Nini live in Karagita, the largest informal settlement in Naivasha. The farm provides free transport for workers from Karagita to the site. It also offers subsidised health clinics, schools and bursaries, as well as supporting a local youth football club and the planting of trees in the local area.
Nini sells about 260,000 flowers every day and about 80–90 million flowers a year. Eighty percent of these are sent directly to major supermarkets across Europe such as Tesco in the UK, Kaufland in Germany and Carrefour in France, as well as stores in Russia and Japan. The remaining stems are transported directly to the Netherlands for flower auctions.
Photo: © International Alert