Here is your Valentine’s Day reality check.
Speaking with Importers it seems that pre-books are down slightly from years past signaling that wholesale buyers assume there will be ample product around when needed. The weather in South America has been cold so the crops are a bit late but that will likely mean great fresh product with little time to rotate anything. It also means that the bouquet companies will be scrabbling to find product to fill orders. This keeps the market prices tight and makes the buyers waiting game all that much more stressful.
Everyone agrees that mid week holidays are the best and strong orders from the wire services are a good indication that they are looking for a good one this year. E-commerce orders are up and due to overnight delivery they can take orders over the weekend and still meet demand.
There are some reasons to believe that the European markets will be buying more South American products due to the fact that the EURO is strong and the dollar is weaker and the Colombian Peso is stable plus the African production is down due to weather. 1 Dollar = .81 euros. 1 Dollar = 2,864 and 1 Euro = 3,234 pesos,
as of Monday 1-22.
The freight rate increases that the airlines have instituted over the last few months have not gone down and, in fact, the airlines have begun charging their holiday surcharge rates as of Monday 1-22. Due to this surcharge the airlines will add enough flights to manage the demand.
The exceptions are the fern growers of Florida dealing with multiple freezes and the growers in California dealing with fires and mudslides. The greens growers have been battling cold temperatures and using ice to protect their crops. They do a good job so there should be greens for your flowers but order early.
According to the CCFC the California growers for the most part were ok with fires but mudslides closing the 101 made logis problem. The 101 is open again so this should not be a problem. The Santa Barbara area was most affected while other west coast producers are in full production.
The trucking industry is dealing with elogs which I have written about before so beware that some carriers might have problems with on-time deliveries. Most floral carriers have already made this transition and have worked out the bugs.
If the US weather holds up this will be a good one. Good Luck to all and I hope everyone does great.