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How Shopping Locally Makes a Difference

Shopping Locally

Photo credit: @simplybeaming

As a modern consumer, you have the power to pick and choose which products you source locally. One of these products is something you see day-to-day and that you often take for granted: flowers. Your local florist has a pretty cool secret behind their profit gains, too. Their motive is simple: they want to bring the happiness and joy of flowers to their community in an ethical and environmentally friendly way.

When you support your local florist, they funnel that money right back into building a beautiful community for you to live in. When you invest in your local flower farmer, they produce even more flowers that support your local environment. Who doesn’t love driving by a beautiful outdoor flower field on their commute to work? What a wonderful gift you’ve been given to experience the insurmountable beauty of flowers, right in your own neighborhood. Here are more reasons why shopping locally really does make a big difference.


Give Your Neighbor a Hand

Each and every one of us has felt the recent pressure of our falling economy. The word recession has become the daily buzzword around the workplace lunchroom chatter. People are losing their livelihoods and careers. Companies are tightening their belts and their wallets in an effort to stay afloat during these difficult times. Businesses often outsource much of their commodities and labor, while Americans are getting laid off or their wages drastically cut. The local floral industry has become a direct target of this.

Nurseries and farms are closing at a rapid rate due to the increase in unethical farms. Think back to the last time you placed an order for flowers. Did you give any thought to where your flowers actually came from? You probably don’t know, because the florist doesn’t tell you. This is so they can get away with doing the absolute bare minimum so they can profit more and spend less while they’re at it.

Kenya is considered to be the biggest cut flower exporter in the world. Sadly, the average farmworker makes a meager $70 a month, and they can barely support their families. The Kenyans are repeatedly exposed and improperly protected from the hazardous chemicals and pesticides these companies use. The majority of the workers employed in the farms are female. There have been numerous reports of sexual harassment of these women. Cases of loss of vision and infertility have been reported. You can read up some more about the flower farm crisis in Kenya here and make sure you explore the current conditions of Ethiopian flower farmers in this greenhouse surveillance study.

Fortunately, there is some good news in all of this. Your efforts make a large impact in helping our farmers. By making sure you purchase from eco-friendly and sustainable farms, you help keep your neighbors employed. Local farms and shops will always employ the residents to work. When you shop with us at Bouqs, we guarantee that our local farm-to-table flowers come from special artisan farmers from the Fields of USA and are certified Fair Trade. All of our sources are monitored by Fair Trade America, for a safe working environment and fair treatment of each of our farmers. All of our sources use sustainable farming methods sold without chemical preservatives.


Imported Flowers Have it Really Rough

The conditions that imported flowers are being shipped under is probably something you never thought of. Cargo jets emerged not that long ago, so it was only in 1960 that flowers became a hugely imported commodity. With the arrival of imported flowers, grocery stores jumped on the money-making market. They started creating entire departments in their chains devoted exclusively to the sale of import flowers, which hugely contributed to the closure of local flower farms.

While it makes more sense to transport flowers in buckets of water, it is lighter and much cheaper to just pack them flat into boxes. So the flower farm cuts every corner to maximize the amount it exports. The flower’s journey first begins a greenhouse among noxious chemical fumes. Then the flowers are taken to a crowded packhouse after being harvested prematurely. Then, they’re packed tightly into boxes resulting in bent stems and loss of florets and leaves. Often times the actual shipment is reduced by 40 percent once it’s received. This means after its approximate 2500 mile journey across the ocean, a good amount of them never even make it out of the box.

This is a needless waste and could be avoided entirely if we all just ordered our flowers from reputable sources. Bouqs will always supply flowers that are cut to order to eliminate such waste. When we ship, we follow warming and cooling preservation that is certified for proper transport. Your blooms will never suffer damage in transport, and we always practice proper handling procedure in our nurseries. Nothing is wasted, and we never use chemical preservatives. A bouquet from Bouqs will always be treated with the utmost care to ensure its health and longevity.


Spreading Agricultural Awareness, One Bouq at a Time

Flower farmers make an irreplaceable contribution to our nation’s agricultural welfare. Remember the economics behind it all?  The Agricultural industry alone reaches billions of dollars annually. The White House released its own plan to reverse the damage. One of these ways is by establishing local seed banks that are bee-friendly.  But we have to work together to make this work. By supporting your local flower farms, you will keep that system up and running which will, in turn, increase the revenue of our farmers. Who will then put that money right back our population?

At Bouqs we are proud to join the movement to save our economy. We stand by our promise to stay pesticide-free and protect our environment. We offer sustainable and eco-friendly bouquets of all of your favorites and even some new ones for you to fall in love with! We have delicate daisies, sunflowers that will brighten any mood, sweetly scented freesia, and of course the exotic orchid blossom. You never have to look beyond your own backyard for an Instagram snapshot-worthy bouquet to brag about to all of your friends. To sweeten we will only cut what we sell, which leaves all the more for the bees to work their pollination magic on!


How You Can Join Us

Can you even imagine a world without those plump and happy little bumblebees and beautiful butterflies flitting about? We certainly can’t!  So we encourage you to shop local when you buy your flowers. After all, the only sure way to keep those bees around is to keep those flowers growing around our community farms.

The next time you see a bee, take a moment to really think how your simple decision to become aware of where your flowers come from can promote ethical practices. We offer online ordering just like any other floral company but when you order local flower delivery from us, you can give our people and living creatures a fighting chance, which in turn, creates a more beautiful place for us to call home.

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