It may be hard to believe but the increase in rose prices around St. Valentine’s Day, really does have merit
As retail florists we have been confronted through the years by a few customers regarding the issue of the increase in rose prices during the week preceeding Valentine’s Day. Some customers even believe that florists take advantage of them, nothing could be further from the truth!
The truth is that rose pricing at Valentine’s Day has little to do with the local retail florist. The increase in prices is simply the issue of supply and demand and is almost entirely an issue with growers, and understandably so. The number of commercial rose bushes is the same on February 14th as it is on July 14th. Roses are a long term crop which means that the flowers are produced on established bushes. Growers cannot grow more roses only for February 14th. What growers can do is to prune (cut back) the bushes in the late fall so as to maximize production in February. This means that their production in November and December is low and they have two months with substantially less product to sell which results in a higher price when the demand is high.
While we are not rose growers, we understand the economics of supply and demand. Think for example what would happen with wine. If the number of wine grapes out paced the demand for them the price of wine would fall, and vise versa. Roses, being perishable, cannot be bottled and so a glut market generally means the roses hit the trash. Roses just aren’t in demand on July 14th like they are on February 14th.
All this to say, we have not even begun to discuss all the issues surrounding rose production like cold winters, what happens when the weather turns warm two weeks before Valentine’s Day and the dozen’s of other issues facing growers, and florists over this busy busy holiday.
We hope this helps… OH and Happy Valentine’s Day!