The business of fresh flowers in the state is showing decrease, according to the local vendors. One of the main reason for it is the increase in the use of artificial flowers, reports Dhanashri Karbotkar
The vendors could be seen selling fresh flowers in various markets of the state and along the roadsides, however the fresh flower market is facing slow down in recent years, according to the local vendors. The local vendors say that increasing sale of artificial flowers is affecting their business.
Sujata Dilip Popkar who has been selling flowers for more than 25 years in Bicholim market is facing difficult time now and since last two years their business has decreased. Popkar blames shutdown of mining has resulted in slow down of market in state. “I have seen many ups and down in life but this is the toughest time which I and everybody in market is facing now. We used to get lot of orders and sale of flowers used to be very high during festive season like Ganesh and Diwali. But for last few years we got profit only for Ganesh festival,” she said.
Popkar says that modernization has brought many changes in life style of people and it has affected the flower market too. The traditional ‘Fati’ is losing its charm. She said, “In olden days Fati or Sat was commonly wore by women during Jatra or any other festival. Shevanti fati was popular and highest sold item but now its demand has decreased and women prefer to wear light weighted fati or just small bunch of white flowers or just one rose. Marigold garland or traditional garlands which were used in Hindu weddings are replaced by rose garland and rose petal garland.” Popkar revealed that artificial flowers which are used in weddings have ruined the fresh flower market. “People used to buy bulk of fresh flowers to decorate the wedding venue. Now fresh flowers are replaced by artificial flowers. And people find artificial flowers more convenient than fresh flowers.”
Many local flower sellers depend on flower business for their livelihood and vendors of different parts of state including capital city of state are facing same problems. One of the local florist of city Lalit Kumar Agarwal owner Florance Flora said, “To be honest my business is not affected much may be 10 to 15 percent I dint find much difference in sale as compare to last year.” Agarwal who is dealing with corporate firms further clarified that “as I am dealing with corporate, 10 to 20 percent corporate business has gone down and they have cut down their budget, this has affected our business by 10 to 15 percent. Florist who has been running flower business for 17 year said, “We get 30 percent of flower from Goa and 70 percent from Bangalore and we are promoting our business through word of mouth and as now we are established we didn’t find any need to promote our business through advertisement.” Agarwal added further that only difference we found is that purchasing power of flowers are gone up and selling prices are same. Which has resulted in slow down in our margins and profits otherwise I don’t find any changes. Agarwal claim that market of florist’s has slow down in Goa because of artificial flowers. As more people are coming with artificial flowers like anything. Artificial flowers has killed the fresh flower market, it is not only killing our market but also nature. As 100 percent artificial flowers are made up of plastic, which is harmful for nature. Agarwal also said that my turnover has come down as I have stop taking orders of weddings. Everyone is using plastic flowers for wedding which I don’t use. Agarwal believes that manufacturing and selling of plastic flowers should stop only than fresh flower market will bloom again.
According to one of the local florist of Panaji roses, yellow marigolds, yellow and white chrysanthemum are some of highest selling flowers during all seasons in Goa. Florist who is running shop for more than 20 years in state capital said that we import flowers form Belgaum, Kolhapur, Hyderabad, and we order flowers as per the demand and season. This year sale was less compared to last year. He also added, “I am investing my own capital to run my business, and we never got any scheme or help from government.”
As many florist of state claim that fresh flower market has slow down on other hand local flower vendor of Mapusa believe that fresh flowers cannot be replaced by any form of artificial flowers. “I agree that of fresh flower market is facing slow down but for me it has affected in minimal way,” he said. Local vendor added further that we use fresh flower for prayers which cannot be replaced by artificial flowers. We have faced loss only during heavy rainy season as availability of flowers was less. But rest of all season where good for us in terms of sale. Vendors are also looking for increase in sale of flowers in coming