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Shaun Parish, Ontario Flower Growers:

"Canada: "Pleasing results for OFG's new virtual auction system"

"We've been running the virtual auctions for several weeks now and the results are pleasing overall", says Shaun Parish of Ontario Flower Growers (OFG). OFG is modernizing its auction system and launched a virtual auction system on three clocks on April 28. Two weeks ago they started a 4th clock for virtual import product.

The OFG's first 'real' virtual auction was on one clock. "It was a great success, we were able to sell more products than all of our previous test virtual auctions from last year combined", says Parish. "I believe that the key to our success so far has been careful coordination among growers to offer a large variety of supply, at slightly better pricing. The lower prices make it easier to ‘experiment’ with new ways of purchasing."

4 clocks running simultaneously.

Two weeks ago, OFG started to use their 4th clock for virtual import product. "This marks the first time in OFG history that we’ve had 4 clocks running simultaneously", says Parish. As this could be a bit overwhelming for buyers who are used to 2 clocks, they recommend using their Remote Buyer program. Then, the buyers can login and Pre-bid or Pre-Purchase the product before it goes on auction. "The majority of our buyers who started doing this are very satisfied with their purchase results."

According to Parish, virtual auctions are starting to take on a life of their own. "Momentum has begun, and both growers and buyers are seeing results and becoming used to the process."

Their next step in their summer promotion will be in June. "We will be at the International Floral-Culture Expo (IFE) in Chicago to present our Remote Buying and virtual auction options to their US customer base", concludes Parish.

For more information
Ontarion Flower Growers
Shaun Parish
Email: [email protected]