23 April 2020
Author: Ron van der Ploeg
BARCELONA, Spain: On Sant Jordi’s Day, the Mercabarna flower and food wholesale market is giving away 10,000 roses to warehouse workers and health care professionals to thank them for their incredible efforts during the coronavirus pandemic.
An early-morning surprise awaited the more than 6,000 workers/tenants at the giant Mercabarna wholesale market, which serves Barcelona and its surrounding area. In a sweet show of gratitude, Mercabarna, in partnership with the Catalonian Guild of Florists, gave out a red rose to the hard-working staff at Mercabarna’s fish, fruit and vegetable and meat markets.
At 9am this morning, 4,000 health care professionals at the Bellvitge University Hospital were gifted roses as token of appreciation to the hardworking doctors, nurses and support staff.
Mercabarna’s general manager, Mr Josep Tejedo, highlights the importance of the give-away blooms at a time that Mercabarna’s flower division, Mercabarna-flor, is shut due to government-imposed closure of non-essential businesses. He says, “We want to do our bit to help the flower sector, which has been so badly affected by this crisis. We would also like to express our gratitude to the health care professionals and Mercabarna workers, the people that are essential to keep our society afloat.”
La Diada de Sant Jordi day on 23 April is in celebration of Saint George or Sant Jordi in Catalan. Sant Jordi was a romantic and chivalrous guy. He also happens to be the patron saint of the six million inhabitants of Catalonia.
Known as ‘The Day of Lovers’, La Diada de Sant Jordi is often compared to Valentine’s Day, but with a uniquely Latin twist. The main event is the exchange of gifts between lovers; men give their novias (girlfriends) roses while women give their novios (boyfriends) a book to celebrate the occasion. Roses have always been part of this celebration since medieval times.