It's hard to pin down what our industry will look like over the next few years - but what is clear is that times are rapidly changing.
According to business statistics and publications, "the present day floral industry is a dynamic, global, fast-growing industry, which has achieved significant growth rates during the past few decades". The growth rate was on track at between 4-6% annually. Then came COVID, so all predictions were off. Farms closed, retail stores went out of business, large wholesalers laid off employees and event planners and wedding designers were pretty much at a standstill.
Post-COVID, the world has changed - but it might be for the better. There's been a rebirth of getting back to nature, more designers and wholesalers are sourcing from local farms, more people than ever are working from home, consumers are gardening more and growing their own food, the wedding business is booming, technology, at home delivery and social media have exploded, and people are wanting to re-connect with each other after many months of isolation. Where will all of this lead us?
Here are some of our predictions:
More florists will get into the event and wedding business and more event designers will offer every day deliveries.
You will see more Virtual Florists emerge - with on-line shops, consulting and teaching floral "how to" workshops.
The "floral wellness" and back to nature trend will make flowers more of an everyday commodity in homes, rather than an occasion or gift purchase.
More floral businesses will be launched on Instagram and more marketing than ever will be done on social media - leveling the playing field and allowing more entrepreneurs to attract customers, not just the large floral companies.
More consumer direct programs will be launched and more local farms will ship direct to wholesalers, retailers and consumers.
The "Black Lives Matter" movement has inspired more florists to build their brand around racial equity, inclusion ad representation.
Additionally, more florists are building their brands by donating and contributing to non-profits and community minded causes.
DIY is not a phase and will continue to grow - you see it all across social media - from home improvement to cooking to floral design.
More florists will support local growers and demand wholesalers work with farms that are environment friendly.
The cost of growing and transporting flowers is increasing, so pricing will rise, but the value of flowers will increase.
All in all, our industry may be experiencing some painful re-directing, but we'll likely come away stronger and better for the the future.