Did Valentine’s Day Meet the Expectations of WF&FSA Wholesaler Members?

By Molly Alton Mullins, WF&FSA Executive Vice President

Each year WF&FSA polls its wholesaler community to gather information on Valentine’s Day sales and results. How were pre-books this year? Did wholesalers spend more on transportation than in 2018? How were your inventory levels after the holiday? Were rose prices up? Well the results are in – read below to see how your business compared.

Sales were up, but not for everyone
When asked if overall sales were up in 2019 compared to last year, 32 percent of respondents saw between 1 and 9 percent increases. A lucky 12 percent saw sales increases between 10 and 19 percent, but sales remained flat for 24 percent of wholesaler respondents. That was still better than 28 percent who saw sales decrease between 1 and 9 percent this year over last year.


Prices and satisfaction were on the rise
It cost more money this year to purchase roses, according to the majority of respondents. In total, 44 percent said rose prices were up in 2019; 52 percent said prices remained flat. No one saw a decrease in rose costs. However, almost everyone was satisfied with the quality of the product they received. Eighty-four (84) percent were “satisfied or very satisfied” and only four percent of respondents were dissatisfied. The majority of WF&FSA wholesaler respondents are sourcing directly from the farm, with 38 percent of respondents sourcing more than 80 percent of their product directly, mainly from Ecuador (65 percent).



Floral supplies were a mixed bag
The floral supply side of the business was less consistent this holiday season. Thirty-seven (37) percent saw sales rise between 1 and 9 percent; while almost 30 percent said sales remained flat. Unfortunately, 25 percent said floral supply sales were down 1 - 20 percent, with 5 percent of this total group stating supply sales were down between 10 and 19 percent.




The outlook for 2019 remains (somewhat) positive
Despite Valentine’s Day not being a spectacular holiday for most, the majority of respondents remain optimistic for the rest of the year. Sixty-six (66) percent expect sales to remain up in 2019, and only 4 percent expect a decrease. Twelve (12) percent remain uncertain, and are hoping for a strong Mother’s Day holiday and wedding season. 


You can read the full survey results here and we encourage you to share your experience in the comments section below. Best wishes for strong sales in 2019 and beyond.

Molly Alton Mullins is the Executive Vice President of WF&FSA. She can be reached at 410-940-6360 or mmullins@wffsa.org.

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