"Currently demand for Ecuadorian roses for this Valentine's Day season is extremely high. Many rose farms in the Ecuadorian territory have suffered a delay on production as a result of bad/cold weather, which has reduced supply substantially. This has been positive for us; we are practically sold out." This is explained by Mauricio Ospina, Sales Manager at EQR, an Ecuadorian 100+ ha rose farm that is located in Lasso.
As for most of the farms, Valentine's Day is one of their most important holidays, followed by Mother's Day. "The reason behind it is that Valentine’s Day is very popular and widely celebrated all across the globe."
Since last Monday, January 18, they are already shipping out their flowers, mainly to the United States, Canada, Russia, Italy, Holland, China. "75% of our rose production goes to the US. However, we have been working very hard the last 2 years to catch new markets with special projects and products aiming to attract customers in Russia, Europe and China. Our main focus is to work with wholesalers. We are a farm of over 100 hectares, so we are more than capable to supply to that market."
COVID-19 and unexpected high demand
According to Ospina, the COVID-19 situation created a challenging year, but all in all, they are very pleased with the demand and the quality of their product. "Despite all the changes that we have made at farm level due to the COVID pandemic; we have handled to keep the quality our customers are used to throughout the year." And regarding the demand, it is higher than expected. "We honestly weren’t expecting to have such great demand for this holiday. And not only for this holiday but throughout 2020 right after the COVID outbreak, demand has been high. It has been really surprising for all of us."
Valentine's Day preparations at the farm Source: LinkedIn page EQR)
COVID-19 and changes
"This year is certainly special as our industry has had pivotal change and has adapted so well to the current pandemic, that has truly made us feel like we can achieve anything at this point. Changes are always scary and challenging, but we have always tried to keep it positive and taking all the right measures to safeguard the well-being of our workers which is of outmost importance for EQR. The virus is closer than ever, and we can’t let our guard down, so we keep constantly reinforcing our safety protocols, and adapting our processes. There are always opportunities in times of crisis, and that is exactly what has happened for us."
Next holiday: Women's Day
The last shipments for Valentines Day are expected to leave the farm on February 6th, 2021. After that, they will start getting ready for Russians Women’s Day, which is also an important holiday for them.
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