When you need a beautiful bouquet for a birthday, anniversary or even sympathy flowers, you most likely don’t give much thought to the industry in general. To think that centuries ago the flower industry was just getting started and today we can buy flowers online! In the 19th century, growers began cultivating larger crops of flowers in the UK. Today, we see that this trend has expanded to the entire world with each country boasting its own range of unique blooms.
Three main components
When you think about this multi-billion Dollar industry, it’s important to note that there are several components involved. It all starts with the grower and then moves on to the wholesaler and finally the retailer. That said, times are changing and we can also see a shift in the flower industry. This change comes the form of ‘eliminating’ the middle man. In other words, florists are looking for ways to buy directly from the grower and eliminate the need for a wholesaler. Not only does this ensure fresher blooms for the client, but it also helps lower costs.
Different types of flowers have different needs. One of the trickiest obstacles that the flower industry has had to navigate is that of transportation. It’s one thing getting the bouquet from the shop to your door. It’s completely different when you need to transport bulk amounts from one country to another. Flowers that can handle a few hours out of water can be packed into boxes for transport. However, those that are particularly thirsty may not be able to handle the stress of dehydration. These blooms are either transported in buckets of water or they transported with sealed water containers attached to the base of each stem. Each bloom, therefore, has an adequate amount of water to last them the journey.
The role of the Netherlands
When you think about the booming flower industry, one of the most important contributors is the Netherlands. Famous for their impressive tulip production, it is these flowers that really put them on the map. They are the top producer of cut flowers in Europe and export to dozens of countries around the world. People also visit the Netherlands just to see the famous tulip fields for themselves!
Seeking out new growers
From the florist’s perspective, two factors are essential: cost and quality. The retailer always wants to make sure that their customers are happy with the blooms that they receive as well as the cost. If flowers are too expensive, their sales will be quite limited. Cheap flowers sell faster but, again, if they are not quality blooms, you will not find many of your clients returning. The flower industry is now expanding to developing countries. In these countries, the labour rates are lower which means that the cost per stem is also lower. In many of these countries, like Kenya, Thailand and India, the climate is such that it allows for flower varieties to thrive where they would normally not grow in colder zones. This means that the florist can offer an even wider range of blooms and colours.
As the demand for fresh flowers continues to grow, so too does the flower industry. Not only is this good news for florists and customers, but it’s also great for developing countries. The opportunity to export such a popular product boosts their economy and helps lower the rate of unemployment.