MIAMI BEACH, Fla. — The International Floriculture Expo — the new incarnation of the annual SuperFloral trade show — will be held be held here, June 22-25, and will focus heavily on preserving the quality of cut flowers from farm to retail, show organizers told SN.
“The expanded education program will feature seminars on keeping the integrity of the cold chain and on doing everything one can along the way to preserve the longevity of cut flowers,” Bob Callahan, group show director, told SN.
“The 2010 schedule includes the return of the pre-show education program on Tuesday, longer exhibit hall hours and a variety of one-hour sessions that run congruent with the exhibit hall's hours.”
During these recessionary times, value has proven to be more important than ever before, floral consultant Terry Johnson told SN in an earlier interview.
While he stressed the importance of value, Johnson, who is president of Horticultural Marketing Resources, Mission Viejo, Calif., said value should not be equated with low price. A huge part of value is cut flowers' longevity, which has much to do with how they're handled from farm to retail, he pointed out.
“At the Floriculture Expo, there will be more attention paid to how the cold chain is handled,” Johnson said. “The cold chain is a unifying feature.”
Supermarket floral and stand-alone floral shops took a hit this past year, industry observers said. In fact, SN has noted that some supermarket floral departments' sales are down as much as 30% from a year earlier.
If they're going to buy cut flowers, consumers want them to last more than a few days, Johnson said.
“The supermarket floral director's role is to make demands on his or her vendors [to provide them with top-quality flowers].”
Callahan said the International Floriculture Expo's education program will include sessions focused on the business of supermarkets, retail florists and growers. Scheduled sessions will explore how to increase sales, and will provide the tools needed to keep customers coming back for more, he said.