The Horticulture Export Development Foundation, in short, Hortex Foundation (HF) was established in 1993 at the patronage of the Ministry of Agriculture, Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh as a non-profit organization. It is registered as a Company Limited by Guarantee and licensed under Section 26 of the Companies Act, 1913 having Registration Number C-323(11)/93. It is governed by a Governing Body of Seven Directors (two from the public and other five from the private sector). Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Government of Bangladesh is the Chairman, while Managing Director is the Chief Executive Officer of the Foundation. He is responsible for the day-to-day operation of the Foundation under the supervision and guidance of the Governing Body.
Meanwhile, Hortex Foundation amended its Memorandum and the Articles of Associations bringing changes mainly in the objectives and area of activities of the Foundation. The amended Memorandum and Articles of Associations were passed as special resolutions in the 4th Extra-Ordinary General Meeting of the Foundation held on March 31, 2011. As per amendment, the General Body will consist of minimum 35 members and the Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) will be the ex-officio Chairman of the Foundation while the Vice Chairman of Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) will be the member of the Governing Body as well as General Body. The remaining members having business/involvement in fresh/frozen/processing of horticultural crops (fruits, vegetables, ornamental plants, flowers, spices, herbs etc), livestock and fisheries representing Non-Government Organization or Company or Association or Chamber or Society or Agriculture Educational Institution will be elected by the Governing Body.
The Foundation has the interest to create opportunities for direct exporter-importer linkages to facilitate the export of fresh/frozen fruits and vegetables, value added processed agro-commodities, foliage (betel leaf) and spices, honey, aromatic rice, ornamental plants, flowers, mushroom, ayurvedic, herbal and medicinal products, fresh water fish (fresh, frozen and processed), Halal meat and different dairy products. It renders services in the quality production, quarantine pest management, proper sorting, grading, packaging, cool chain management, sanitary and phyto-sanitary measures, market intelligence support, trial shipment, human resource development with its limited resources. Hortex Foundation has been in active operation for about 17 years from its inception, and is now well known to different stakeholders as an essential facilitator of high value agro-commodities export promotion in Bangladesh.
Hortex likes to promote export of different high value high quality agro-commodities in the mainstream market of Europe and North America in addition to ethnic market. Some requirements to enter into mainstream market are adoption of Good Agricultural Practice (GAP), traceability, strict compliance of sanitary & phyto-sanitary measures and good packaging. Hortex already had taken initiative to formulate GAP principles and protocols with the Ministry of Agriculture, Govt. of Bangladesh.