Winnipeg florists warn of shortage of fresh-cut flowers for Mother’s Day


With less than two weeks until Mother’s Day, Winnipeg florists say they may be facing a shortage of flowers for the big day. According to the World Trade Centre Winnipeg, higher-than-normal demand for fresh-cut flowers through the coronavirus crisis and recent disruptions to international floral shipments has left many local florists floundering to find flowers.

“Who would have ever thought that Mother’s Day would be affected by international trade and a pandemic? But it is having a huge impact,” said World Trade Centre Winnipeg president and CEO Mariette Mulaire this week.

Mulaire says most of Winnipeg’s florists rely on a supply chain that starts with growers in Ecuador, Peru, Mexico, Colombia and California, but shipments from those parts of the world have been hampered because of a drop in commercial planes and truck shipments due to COVID-19.

But that’s not the only issues that may thwart would-be flower buyers this spring, says Winnipeg florist, Michele Pitre.

The long-time owner of Norwood Florist Design Studio says rainy weather in South America is also affecting growers. She said even if florists could expect normal deliveries this year, it’s already been nearly impossible to keep up with a ramped-up demand during the pandemic.

“It’s the increase in demand coupled with the shipping hiccups that we’ve experienced just recently, that has really started to manifest itself, to the point where we feel that our sales could possibly be impacted next week.”

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