Similar to the developments in foreign trade, the demand in Germany is turning out
to be stable for cut flowers and very weak for potted plants. The demand for cut
flowers in the peak sales periods (Valentine's Day, Mother's Day and Easter) was
good according to a survey of the German wholesale trade businesses (CO
CONCEPT and BGI). Good prices and good sales are leading to a positive view for
the whole of 2013. It seems that the purchases of cut flowers in the spring profited
from the reticence with regard to buying plants. Apart from the low in demand in the
hot spell in July and August, 2013 is being called a good year for cut flowers.
In contrast with this, the German wholesale trade in potted plants is reporting
dramatic reticence with regard to purchasing. The weather-induced shortfall for the
spring-flowering plants was followed by the delayed and lower sales of bedding and
balcony plants. The ready-for-sale goods have accumulated in the production
businesses and, as a surplus, have then been "flogged" via the price. In the estimation
of the wholesale trade, the retail trade has, in part, passed the low prices on to the
end consumer who has reacted not with a rise in demand but instead with irritation.
The retail trade is indicating that the demand has declined between 10 % and 30 %
with regional differences and that it will no longer be possible to make up for this by
the end of the year. The DIY store sector is specifying a 12.8 % decline in the
turnover in the "Living Greenery" product line for the first half of 2013. Here, it is
being shown clearly that no demand can be created via dumping prices. On the
contrary, this price policy devalues the product in its significance and weakens the
demand in the long term.
The demand for potted plants had not developed by the autumn. In the estimation of
experts, no brisk autumn business had yet been discernible by the end of September
either and the prices were being put under pressure once more. Perhaps, this was
again being caused by the weather which, with high temperatures, made the summer
flowers blossom for too long and blocked the autumn plantingactivities. Or the
consumer has, for a whole year, forgotten how to become enthusiastic about buying
plants. AMI's data about the consumption expenditure of the German consumers is
being eagerly awaited.
Based on a report by Dr. Marianne Altmann CO CONCEPT Luxembourg