Blogging from London

Posted by on August 19, 2006 in Cut Flowers | 3 comments

I went into Marks & Spencer’s Simply Food, an upscale UK grocery store kind of like Trader Joe’s in the US, to check out the kinds of flowers they sell.  I’d heard that they were going to start offering a new rose developed by David Austin for the cut flower market that was designed to have both an old-fashioned rose fragrance and a longer life in the vase.

Dscn1582 I didn’t find the David Austin roses, but I did find inexpensive  (by London standars) flowers with two surprising things on their labels:  a vase life guarantee, and a sell-by date.  Imagine:  you can check  the sell-by date for your carnations the same way you would your eggs or milk.  Care instructions were on the back.  Interesting, eh?  Would you be more likely to shell out about six bucks for a bunch of flowers if they came with a guarantee and had a freshness date stamped right on them?

Next I went to Tesco, another UK grocery store that had recently announced it would be selling Fairtrade flowers.  Once again, I couldn’t find what I was looking for–they were almost sold out Dscn1586 of flowers on a Saturday evening and all they had left were horrid bouquets of dyed mums and carnations–but once again, I saw vase life guarantees and this–a warning that lilies could be toxic to cats–on the label.

I wonder what distraught cat owner got that on every flower label in Tesco?

3 Comments

  1. I would definitely be likely to buy more cut flowers if the growers added a sell-by date and a guarantee for freshness!

  2. hi amy
    Hope you’re enjoying London! I’ve seen (and bought) Fairtrade roses in my local Tesco in Bedfordshire, but they’re certainly very much in the minority among the rest of the flowers.

  3. I can’t remember whether or not they were putting these labels on the flowers the last time I bought any in Tesco’s (3 or 4 years ago). I just remember enjoying the great variety they had available versus the few poor carnations, roses, and alstromeria I usually find in the local groceries.
    While you’re in London, I certainly hope that you’ve set aside time to see at least some of Kew Gardens!