COVID-19 survey

AIPH and FCI COVID-19 global impact survey

Press release: 29 May 2020

Woman holding flowers

A new survey of grower associations, by the International Association of Horticultural Producers (AIPH) and FloraCulture International (FCI), reveals nearly three-quarters (71%) believe that most growers will soon recover after this crisis.

The positive response from so many of the 27 countries that participated is encouraging considering the bleak outlook highlighted in the previous survey when 70% of respondents were expecting to see many growers going out of business by the end of 2020.

Most countries have re-opened garden centres (96%) and florist shops (85%); often ahead of other retail outlets. This recognition of garden retailers as an ‘essential’ service and a safer shopping environment is a great boost for the industry.

Respondents to the survey expected to see


increase in online sales


increased vertical integration in the Ornaments sector


reduction in staffing by growers


reduction in imported products

Garden retailers are strictly adhering to the ‘new normal’ of social distancing, disinfecting and contact payments which are vital in demonstrating a responsible industry. 78% still expect sales for this period to be worse than last year. However, 46% expect demand for plants and flowers in the coming weeks to be higher than at the same time the previous year. There is a clear sense of optimism for the future coming through the responses as many are hoping to claw back at least some of the sales lost during this time.

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“Our results show that many growers across the world are really struggling this year. Support from their governments is vital for their survival. However, it is encouraging to see optimism coming back as growers seek to urgently meet the needs of new waves of interest in garden plants and a renewed recognition of the value of plants and flowers to healthy and happy lives. The industry must build on these glimmers of hope to shape the sector for recovery and eventually, growth.”

Tim Briercliffe, Secretary General, AIPH