I really enjoyed listening to Debra Prinzing’s interview of Michael Genovese of Summer Dreams Farm in a recent episode of the Slow Flowers podcast. A Certified American Grown farmer in Michigan, Genovese shares his
Did you get your April issue of Floral Management?
Check out CCFC’s Chairman Lane DeVries’ Viewpoint article.
CCFC’s Chairman Lane DeVries of Sun Valley Floral Farms took an opportunity in this month’s Floral Management magazine to address the specific issues and concerns regarding the effect federal trade policies have had on the flower farmers of California. Titled, “America’s Flowers: Worth Fighting For,” Chairman DeVries’ highlights that California’s flower farmers’ issues and concerns have little to nothing to do with begrudging the success of Colombian flower growers, but rather a frustration with U.S. Government’s trade policies.
“California flower farmers, by and large, don’t begrudge the success of Colombian flower growers. As a matter of fact, many good friends in the flower business are growers in Colombia and other South American countries.”
Chairman DeVries’ article was, in part, a response to February’s Viewpoint article written by SAF’s Chairman Leo Roozen titled, “Colombia: Don’t Begrudge Their Success.” Roozen’s February Viewpoint was inspired by his recent experience visiting Colombia’s growing operations. Chairman DeVries highlights that it is the specific U.S. trade policy concerns that have left domestic (not just California) farmers at a disadvantage, rather than frustrations with Colombia’s success and growth in the U.S. market.
Additionally, “Letters to the Editor,” from California flower farmers responding to Roozen’s Viewpoint, were sent in from David Clark of Kendall Farms and Rene VanWingerden of Ocean Breeze Floral Farms who also shared their thoughts on the fairness of the “playing field.” (pg.8).
Lane ends his Viewpoint article highlighting his hope and vision for the future ahead for California’s flower farms, saying:
“I can see a future where consumers request local flowers from local florists, and that’s a future worth fighting for.”
By Chad Nelson, Eufloria Flowers
Chairman, California Cut Flower Commission
I really enjoyed this year’s SAF Convention in Palm Springs.
During last week’s convention, I had the chance to participate in a variety of interesting meetings and valuable activities. However, what I ended up enjoying the most was the camaraderie with my fellow California flower farmers. Typically we are all so busy working and selling our flowers, that not nearly enough time is made to catch up and hear how others are doing. In addition, I was really proud to be a part of a team of California flower farmers that did a great job representing California while the convention was being held in California.
I must give credit to CCFC’s Promotion Committee Chair Rodi Groot and his committee for their forward thinking and thoughtful consideration on how to best represent the CA Grown brand while at Convention. It was great to see the work and thought that the committee put into preparing for the convention come together for the benefit of us all. I personally appreciated seeing all of the “CA Grown” buttons worn by all of us representing our California flower farms. It was fun to see where those buttons ended up. I noticed that some had made their way into the hands of retailers who were equally as proud to represent their support for CA Grown flowers.
The Promotion Committee also felt that it was important to welcome all of the convention’s attendees to California. Recognizing it couldn’t be done with our flowers, someone suggested that a welcome card with a “CA Grown” bottle of wine would be a nice touch. And it was. I received many acknowledgements of thanks for this warm gesture from the Commission; something I believe people will remember.
I was also proud to see the Commission sponsoring this year’s Sylvia Cup. The Sylvia Cup is a longstanding tradition in our industry and I believe that our “CA Grown” brand is well served by our affiliation and sponsorship of this event. I don’t know where he got this, but I think our Ambassador Kasey says it best when he says that the Sylvia Cup is, “America’s best designers paired with America’s best flowers.”
In addition, I also want to congratulate my fellow “Best in Class” award winners from the Outstanding Varieties Competition. Seeing five out of the eleven entries from California is not only notable, but also a reflection of the passion that I know goes into growing our flowers. Congratulations to Green Valley Floral, Holland America Flowers and Resendiz Brothers.
The combination of all of these efforts really made me proud to be a part of the team here in California. I really want to thank the commission’s Promotion Committee for putting all of these pieces together in such a way that you couldn’t help but feel proud of who we are and what we do for our industry from right here in California.