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2014 National Flower Production and Sales Analysis Conference Held in Tianjin

According to the news published on China’s Forestry Administration’s website on March 10th over the past two years, the flower industry in China has been confronted with many challenges. More focus has been put on how to realize transform and upgrade this industry and how to attain a healthy and sustainable development. On Feb. 24th, the 2014 National Flower Conference was held beside Tian Jin’s Dongli Lake to analyze the latest sales and production trends in the flower industry. More than forty participants, who were primarily executives from leading flower companies, local industry regulators and the media, gathered together to conduct in-depth communication on the theme of Promoting Transformation and Leading Development.  

 

The schedule for the 24th was very tight. There was a plenary meeting in the morning, group discussions in the afternoon. At noon, a field visit was arranged. The plenary meeting was chaired by the Deputy Secretary-General of China Flower Association, Chen Jianwu. Chen first briefed everyone on the survey carried out by China Flower Association on Spring Festival flowers- flowers used to decorate the house during the Spring Festival. He pointed out that the flower industry was facing new challenges. The purpose of this meeting is to provide an effective platform to facilitate communication between leading flower enterprises and industry regulators. By conducting extensive and insightful exchanges, people in the industry can establish common grounds and lead the industry to develop in a sustainable and healthy way. Later, participants to the meeting expressed their views and analyzed the sales trends of each particular enterprise in the context of different regions and the whole country. They also made some recommendations at the end of their remarks.

 

After combining feedbacks from different sides, we found that there were many uncertainties in the Spring Festival flower market this year. Though the sales volume remained stable, sales revenue witnessed a noticeable drop. The market began warming up much later than previously. The industry was not efficient in promoting its products. Whereas butterfly orchid, pineapple, anthurium and other main Spring Festival flowers were not sold at a satisfactory price, conventionally famous flowers and small potted plants did pretty well.

 

Chen Zhang, deputy researcher at the Fujian Provincial Forestry seedlings Station, reported on the sales of Spring Festival flowers in Fujian province. He also mentioned that fashionable flowers like Butterfly orchid, bromeliad were over-supplied, but conventional flowers like cymbidium, daffodils witnessed an increase both in sales volume and price. These flowers were of good quality and were sold at a fair price. The deputy secretary-general of Sichuan Flower Association, Zhu Tingpu, studied the sales condition of Spring Festival Flowers and found that main flower products were sold at lower prices, but companies producing and selling flowers were still profiting. This showed that the flower market in the west of China had much untapped potential. The secretary-general of Beijing Flower Association, Zhao Wuyi, pointed out that in Beijing, previously popular flowers did not perform well in terms of price and sales, but niche products and specialty products underwent less pressure. Many companies started to phase out the concept of Spring Festival flower selling and rolled out the concept of flowers for anniversaries. Qingzhou city of Shandong is an important area for main flower products in the north. Huang Xiaoming, the head of the Flower Industry Administration Bureau of Qingzhou city, had already felt that this year, Qingzhou’s Spring Festival flower market was not warming up very quickly compared with previous years. The market began to slowly warm up in the latter half of the twelfth lunar month. The sales volume went up but the price saw a drop. He also found that rural markets in Qingzhou had been developed; especially rural markets for small potted plants grew at a higher pace. Lu Jiliang, the secretary-general of Yunnan’s Flower Industry Association, reported that in 2013, the output and export volume of Yunnan’s flower industry saw a significant increase. After restructuring, Yunnan’s flower industry’s focus shifted from fresh cut flowers only to include seedlings, specialty flowers, and potted flowers.

 

Last year, China Flower Association set up the small potted plants industry group. In addition to summaries on main Spring Festival flowers, enterprises also reported significant increases in the sales volume and prices of small potted plants, with households being the primary potential customers. The production of small potted plants at Guangzhou Research Institute of Forestry and Garden increased by 50%, and were more profitable than Anthurium and bromeliad. Ruan Lin, the head of the institute believed that this was due to their timely readjusting of the product profile and sales strategy and their focus on anniversary selling. The chairman of Joint Flowers Company in Guangzhou, Li Qiu, said that companies should seize the opportunity presented during the difficult time of the industry. Companies should grasp the direction to which the industry is developing and make right judgments in adjusting their production and product profile. Faced with the current situation, Yang Tieshun, the chairman of Tianjin Binhai International Flower and Technology Park Corporation, pointed out that fluctuations in the flower market were mainly caused by oversupply and the mismatch of information about market demand. He estimated that after adjustment, prices of flowers would go back to normal within one or two years. The chairman of Zhengjiang Senhe Corporation, Zhen Yongping, also believed that flower markets that were growing rapidly from a small base had large potential. He argued that industry transformation was an inevitable trend and that companies with reasonable product profile, high quality products and competitive prices would stand out amidst market competition. Changjiang Shengde, the chairman of Zhejiang Hongyue Flower Corporation, presented his analysis on the retail end of flowers. He argued that if the flower industry was to be brought closer to households, companies should target different types of consumers and produce products of different levels accordingly.

 

After the plenary meeting, participants were divided into four discussion groups in the afternoon. These groups conducted even more insightful discussions on heated issues in the industry. Participants shared with each other their views on existing practices and problems in production, quality control, sales and logistics. Additionally, they made recommendations on sales channeling, standard setting and organizational structure, with a view to exploring the road ahead.

 

This conference was hosted by China Flower Association, and supported by China Flower Horticulture Magazine and Tianjin Binhai International Flower and Technology Park Corporation, with the assistance from Tianjin Flower Industry Association.

 

Provide by Hortiflorexpo IPM Shanghai (Intex Shanghai)

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