Colombia, South America

Jardines de Los Andes

Family Operated

Owned and operated by the Herrera Family  

Founded In

1969  

Location

Bogotá Plateau 8,500 ft above sea level  

Known for

Alstroemeria & mixed bouquets 

Certification

Rain Forest Alliance

Community orientation

Huaylas Learning Center,

Employee's Fund

Jardines de Los Andes

Jardines de Los Andes is in Colombia, South America. The farm is located on the Bogotá plateau, 8,500 ft above sea level, where the flowers are grown “closer to the stars.” Founded in 1969 by the Herrera brothers, the farm continues to operate as a family business. Jardines de Los Andes is committed to community and environmental sustainability in all of their daily operations.  

Jardines de Los Andes is located in Colombia, South America on the Bogotá plateau 2,600 mt (8,500 ft) above sea level, where flowers are grown “closer to the stars”. They are a fresh cut flower grower and mixed bouquet manufacturer that export mainly to the USA. “We are committed to premium quality fresh cut flowers and innovation in the designs of our mixed flower bouquets. Loyal to our values and customers, we offer a unique way of expressing feelings, celebrating special occasions and brightening spaces with exceptional flowers; we grow over 300 different flowers, of which many are exclusive to us,” explains Juan C. Herrera, Sales and Marketing Director.

Pioneer of the industry, Jardines de Los Andes was founded in 1969 by the Herrera brothers. It continues to be a family business with both first and second generations involved and committed to their success. It started small with five greenhouses. Chrysanthemums were planted, grown, harvested and shipped personally by the owners with the help of 21 employees. The first flowers arrived in the USA in October 1969 and a year later in the UK. “It was exciting to innovate and embark on a new endeavor. We had experience in growing vegetables in open air for the local market. However, building greenhouses, growing flowers, and shipping abroad was a completely new business for us and for Colombia (…) Flowers took twice the time to reach the wholesalers and were not refrigerated during the trip, that was a big challenge,” tells Camilo Herrera founder and CEO of the company. Today, Jardines de Los Andes’ flowers can be purchased in all major supermarket chains in the USA (identified by the flower shaped sticker on the sleeve), as premium quality mixed flower bouquets and Alstroemeria bunches.

From day one, Jardines de Los Andes has been aware of their responsibility with the environment and the community. "We were the first company to pay women and men equal salaries. . . something uncommon back in the 1960´s. At a very early stage, we created an Employee’s Fund, so all employees could have easy access to credit to be able to improve their quality of life. Today more than 4,500 employees have improved or bought their homes with the credit and advice provided by the company," explains Bernardo Herrera, founder and Chairman of the Board of Directors.

Jardines de Los Andes provides free medical and dental services; counseling for couples and for families with teenagers; and training for developing skills useful for any household. Cooking, repairing motorcycles, sewing, crafts, flower arrangements, computers and playing musical instruments are just some of the activities that both employees and their families can access through the Huaylas learning program. In 2012, more than three thousand people, including employees and their families, benefited from these social programs. 

Jardines de Los Andes is an environmentally sustainable farm, certified by the Rain Forest Alliance; and recognized by the Unites States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), who in 2007 presented Jardines de Los Andes with The Stratospheric Ozone Protection Award. “Jardines de los Andes. . . deserves special mention for their constant support to UNIDO projects, their generosity in sharing pest management strategies, and the outstanding level of sustainability achieved at their flower farms. They have made time unconditionally for growers from Guatemala, the Dominican Republic, Kenya, Turkey, Mexico, Argentina, and other countries. They have provided ample information on costs and results of alternatives, how to solve problems that could arise and how to adapt these technologies to specific circumstances,” (EPA, 2007).

Some of their eco-friendly practices include: 100% of the organic waste is transformed into compost, which is used jointly with other organic products as fertilizers; irrigation is done mainly with rain harvested water, and water used in other processes is re-used; and for pest control biological products and physical techniques are used.

“Innovation and attention to detail are part of our core values. These drive the way we grow and handle our flowers, and also our constant research in order to offer novelty flowers, with exceptional colors and textures, which follow the global fashion and design trends. . . We connect to flower lovers and accompany them in making their special places prettier, and their celebrations colorful. We are grateful for being able to celebrate life with flowers!” says Jeronimo Herrera, Technical Manager. 

Here is a look at some of the farmers involved with running and maintaining operations at Jardines de Los Andes

Luis Pérez, has worked with Jardines de Los Andes for 15 years, growing flowers. “I am very happy with my work, and for seeing that the plants are every day prettier. I have benefited from the various programs the company offers. My son had his First Communion last month. I have used credit from the Employee's Fund to refurbish my house and other things. The flowers we grow at Jardines de Los Andes are some of the best grown in Colombia.”

Fernando Triana, has worked at Jardines de Los Andes for 6 years. He is part of the electrical maintenance team. “Thanks to the company's programs, I have been able to study. And thanks God, the company has helped me buy my own house. Our flowers are excellent, that is why we have good customers in the USA, and I know they will continue to buy our flowers”.

Isabel Martínez has worked at Jardines de Los Andes for 18 years. She is responsible for plant sanitation. “Right now, I'm doing quality control to guarantee that it is excellent from the cutting all the way to the bunch we ship to our customer. I like about Jardines de Los Andes the work stability and the support we receive. Behind each of us, there is a family who also benefits from this company. My grandsons benefit and enjoy very much going to “Huaylas” a place where they go to learn sports, music, art and other activities. My teenage son has benefited from the “Quinceañeros” program, which is great; where teenagers are taught the importance of being a responsible person; and for the parents is very useful because we learn how to raise them.”

© Floralife 2007-2012. All Rights Reserved