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Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 11, and it’s traditionally an extremely busy floral holiday. According to an IPSOS - Insight Floral Trends Consumer Tracking Study, a third of adults buy flowers or plants as gifts for Mother’s Day, and it accounts for 25 percent of yearly floral holiday dollars. There is optimism among some supermarket floral executives hoping that Mother’s Day, along with the other spring holidays, will erase their year-to-date sales deficits. One... Read more
China’s largest international horticultural trade show, Hortiflorexpo IPM, will be held April 23-26 at the Beijing Exhibition Center. Sponsored by the China Flower Association, Hortiflorexpo IPM features floriculture, horticulture and the newest innovations, products and services for the entire gardening industry. The China Flower Association has partnered with Messe Essen Germany since 2012 for this joint fair. Top florists from Germany will demonstrate the newest... Read more
California drought affecting flower growers thorughout the state
The effect of the California drought on flower growers differs widely in the various growing regions of the Golden State. Much of Northern California is in a state of water emergency and Southern California is essentially a desert area that needs its water transported in from miles away. Flower farms in those two areas of the state have been more adversely affected than those along the Central Coast. The present dry spell has been increasingly compared to the historical... Read more
The Fresh Produce & Floral Council’s Northern California Expo is set for April 9 at the Alameda County Fairgrounds in Pleasanton, CA. The theme of the expo is “Connect and Grow.” Anticipated attendance is over 1,500 professionals from across all sectors of the fresh produce and floral industry, Carissa Mace, FPFC president, said. “The Northern California FPFC Expo is the market’s most important networking event,” Mace said. “Kept compact by design, it allows... Read more
Monrovia, headquartered in Azusa, CA, a leading U.S. flower grower of premium garden plants, announced through a press release that it has acquired Connecticut-based Imperial Nurseries. Monrovia already has growing operations in Visalia, CA, Dayton, OR, and Cairo, GA. This acquisition will boost total plant production by 15 percent. “This change will strengthen the sales, production and distribution capabilities of the combined company,” Miles Rosedale, chief... Read more
The Seeley Summit is scheduled for June 22-24, in Lisle, IL, a western Chicago suburb. The topic is “Water: Horticulture’s Next Game Changer?” The board of Cornell University’s Seeley Conference believes that water availability will be among the greatest challenges facing the floriculture industry in coming years, a news release stated.. Seeley Summits are intended to promote discussion of issues important to commercial floriculture. Attendees are limited to 100... Read more
The 2014 International Floriculture Expo, Fresh Ideas in Bloom, moves to the Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, June 10-13. For the past five years the expo has been held in Miami Beach, FL. IFE is a leading U.S. trade event for people from every aspect of the floriculture industry to come together annually to focus on floral education, resources, and connections, according to a news release. The four-day expo includes one education day and three days of... Read more
The mission of the Wholesale Florist & Florist Supplier Association is to provide networking, business opportunities and education to wholesale distributors and their floral suppliers. To support this mission, WF&FSA’s Education Committee’s goal is to develop programs for members to network, do commerce and learn by facilitating participation. In mid-March, the committee met to map out the 2014 educational plan for the association, according to a news release. During... Read more
AmericanHort announced in a press release that its annual convention and trade show has been renamed Cultivate —An AmericanHort Experience. Formerly known as OFA Short Course, Cultivate ‘14 offers educational and networking experiences, and more than seven acres of trade show exhibits including technology, new products and services, and new plant varieties, according eto the relase. This year also sees an expansion of products and services for retailers, nursery... Read more
Calif. reps create bipartisan Congressional Cut Flower Caucus
A newly created bipartisan Congressional Cut Flower Caucus, headed by California Reps. Lois Capps (D-24) and Duncan Hunter (R-50), was snnounced at a Washington, DC, press conference in February. The caucus is open to all members of Congress and is dedicated to promoting the domestic cut flower industry. The launch was celebrated with a roundtable discussion with industry leaders in the Capitol complex, including Kasey Cronquist, chief executive officer of the... Read more
Women’s Day gaining traction  as floral occasion for U.S. customers
By all accounts Women’s Day 2014 was a glowing success for the floral industry. Supermarket floral departments saw their efforts resonate with customers who were already familiar with the holiday, and they witnessed a substantial increase in customers who were new to the holiday. Traditionally, Women’s Day has been very popular in regions with large eastern European and Russian influences; however, this year Women’s Day gained mainstream traction in the United... Read more
Dos Gringos, headquartered in Vista, CA, and one of the larger ornamental sunflower companies in the world, recently conducted a nationwide survey of over 900 floral shoppers who purchase across all channels, but particularly grocery shoppers. Dos Gringos posted the results of the survey on the company’s website. It showed that consumers buy flowers in grocery stores more often than any other venue. They also buy on impulse, with 86 percent making some sort of... Read more
Earth Day and Arbor Day deserve floriculture promotion
Valentine’s Day is important to lovers. Mother’s Day is important to mothers. But to whom are Earth Day and Arbor Day important? Earth Day and Arbor Day should be important to all of us in the floriculture industry, and especially important to those of us who promote the plant and garden products that add environmental benefits to the earth. Earth Day, April 22, is celebrated in 192 countries to bring awareness and respect for the environment, and inspire us toward... Read more
During the ribbon cutting ceremony on March 25 at the World Floral Expo in Rosemont, IL, Harrison (Red) Kennicott, chief executive officer of Kennicott Bros. Co. in Chicago, pointed out an interesting twist of fate. “It is fitting that this show is being held in Rosemont because it was the original area where roses were grown for the Chicago floral trade,” Kennicott said. He recalled his father taking him to Rosemont when he was a child to see the fields of greenhouses.... Read more
United Supermarkets opens  next-generation store in Amarillo
United Supermarkets opened the flagship of its next-generation United stores March 5 in Amarillo, TX. The 55,000-square-foot store features a totally new design, according to a news release. United has been operating stores in Amarillo since 1971. “This is our first United location which reflects our new brand strategy,” said Monica Schierbaum, senior director of marketing for United Supermarkets in Lubbock, TX. “It is a bold statement and truly represents the... Read more
The first day of spring was officially ushered in March 20, but outside my office window there remain more than 18 inches of snow blanketing dormant grass. This cruel winter season unfortunately refuses to release its grasp on the northern parts of the United States. Meanwhile, on the West Coast, hot weather and lack of rainfall continue to challenge flower growers. In this edition we present an in-depth article on the effects of the California drought on flower... Read more
Kitayama Bros. Inc. in Watsonville, CA, announced on its company website that it has diversified into selling directly to mass merchandisers. “For most of our history we have relied on wholesale florists as our main market,” Robert Kitayama, chief executive officer and president of the company, said in a statement on the website. “We still hold a large percentage and have great relationships with the leading wholesale florists in the U.S., but in order to increase... Read more
While Administrative Professionals Day is not classified as a public holiday, there are 4 million administrative professionals in the United States alone, with a projected growth rate of 16 percent over the next eight years. As we in the floral industry are striving to add incremental sales growth to our organizations, Administrative Professionals Day may just be a sleeping giant. Admittedly, this holiday comes with its set of challenges. As we’re all re-establishing... Read more
The World Floral Expo in Chicago continues to gain momentum with over 80 exhibitors representing more than 12 countries registered at last count. The three-day international trade event will be held March 26-28 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, IL, with 27,500 square feet of exhibit area just a few minutes from O’Hare International Airport. Flower design demonstrations by six master floral designers from Holland, a panel discussion about... Read more
The Agricultural Act of 2014, the farm bill, will affect the nation’s Christmas tree growers in addition to other floriculture programs. President Obama signed the bill Feb. 7, creating a check-off program to fund a national Christmas tree promotional board. A provision in the bill adds a 15-cent surcharge on the cost of each tree sold by larger farms. This money will go into a specific program for research and marketing of live trees. It is similar to other check-off... Read more