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Cut Flowers and Houseplants - UK - February 2015

“Florists are in a prime position to capitalise on changing shopping habits as consumers do more of their food shopping locally at convenience stores, but they will need to play their part in promoting sales of flowers both for self-purchase and gifting.”
– Tamara Sender, Senior Retail Analyst

This report answers the following key questions:

  • How has the market performed over the last five years?
  • What factors stand out as the most important when buying flowers?
  • How can retailers drive growth in the cut flowers market?

The cut flowers and houseplants market has been hard hit during the economic downturn as consumers cut back, considering them non-essential purchases. The market is estimated to have declined by 0.5% in the last five years.

Supermarkets continue to dominate the distribution of cut flowers, although a move by consumers towards shopping for food more locally could benefit florists in the medium to long-term.

Freshness stands out as the most important factor people look for when buying flowers. The consumer research shows that consumers are almost twice as likely to prioritise this over low cost.

The product areas covered in this report include fresh cut flowers and foliage, and houseplants.

References may be made in the report to dried and artificial flowers, but these are not included in the market size or any other statistics. Bulbs, bedding plants and other products intended primarily for outdoor display are also excluded from this report.

There is a small area of overlap between indoor and outdoor products in the case of, for example, azaleas, cyclamens and pot-grown bulbs like hyacinths and daffodils, which may be bought as houseplants but can be planted out. The key factor here is the purpose for which they were originally bought.

Mintel’s definitions also include products like professionally assembled bouquets for weddings and other special occasions; as well as wreaths and floral tributes sold through funeral directors.

 

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction

      • Definition
        • Abbreviations
        • Executive Summary

            • The market
              • Figure 1: Best and worst case forecast of consumer spend on cut flowers and houseplants in the UK, 2009-19
            • Market factors
              • Flower imports rise in value
                • Ageing population bodes well
                  • More bespoke marriage and funeral flower arrangements
                    • Seasonal events
                      • Figure 2: Gifts bought for spring occasions, June 2014
                    • Companies, brands and innovation
                      • Channels to market
                        • Figure 3: Trade channels for cut flowers, by percentage share, 2014 (est)
                      • Who’s innovating?
                        • The consumer
                          • Supermarkets are the most popular place to buy flowers
                            • Figure 4: Where cut flowers and houseplants were purchased in the last 12 months in-store and online, November 2014
                          • Some 70% buy flowers as gifts
                            • Figure 5: People who have purchased cut flowers or houseplants for themselves or someone else, November 2014
                          • Average spend on flowers for gifting is £12.40
                            • Figure 6: Average amount spent on buying cut flowers on each purchase, by demographics, November 2014
                          • People buy flowers for themselves 17 times per year
                            • Figure 7: How often people buy cut flowers and/or houseplants for themselves, November 2014
                          • Freshness is key
                            • Figure 8: What people look for when purchasing cut flowers for themselves or someone else, November 2014
                          • Young opt for other gifts over flowers
                            • Figure 9: Attitudes towards buying flowers and/or houseplants, November 2014
                          • What we think
                          • Issues and Insights

                              • How has the market performed over the last five years?
                                • The facts
                                  • The implications
                                    • What factors stand out as the most important when buying flowers?
                                      • The facts
                                        • The implications
                                          • How can retailers drive growth in the cut flowers market?
                                            • The facts
                                              • The implications
                                              • Trend Application

                                                  • Trend: Guiding Choice
                                                    • Trend: Make it Mine
                                                      • Trend Futures: Human
                                                      • Market Drivers

                                                        • Key points
                                                          • Production in the UK remains small
                                                            • Figure 10: Production of plants and flowers in the UK, 2009-13
                                                          • Flower imports rise in value
                                                            • Figure 11: Cut flower imports by type, 2009-13
                                                          • Indoor plant imports
                                                            • Figure 12: Indoor plants imports, 2009-13
                                                            • Figure 13: Young plant, foliage and tree imports, 2009-13
                                                          • Changes to FloraHolland auction system
                                                            • Benefitting from an ageing population
                                                              • Figure 14: Forecast adult population trends, by age group, 2009-14
                                                            • Minimal growth in ABs
                                                              • Figure 15: Forecast adult population trends, by socio-economic group, 2008-18
                                                            • Marriages grow 5.3% in 2012
                                                              • Figure 16: Number of marriages in England and Wales, in thousands, 1981-2012
                                                              • Figure 17: Quarterly totals of weddings in England and Wales, 2012
                                                            • Funeral market to grow to £2.2 billion
                                                              • Figure 18: Death rate per 1,000 people, England and Wales, 2004-13
                                                            • Seasonal events
                                                              • Figure 19: Gifts bought for spring occasions, June 2014
                                                          • Strengths and Weaknesses

                                                            • Strengths
                                                              • Weaknesses
                                                              • Who’s Innovating?

                                                                • Key points
                                                                  • Marketing campaigns
                                                                    • Flowers in the workplace
                                                                      • New platform connecting the supply chain
                                                                        • British grown
                                                                          • Morrisons’ new lab concept
                                                                            • Figure 20: The Flower Shop in Morrisons’ new Weybridge ‘lab’ store
                                                                          • Technical developments
                                                                          • Competitive Context

                                                                            • Key points
                                                                              • £4.78 billion spent on garden products
                                                                                • Figure 21: Consumer spend on garden products, by detailed segment, 2009-13
                                                                            • Market Size and Forecast

                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                • Markets falls 0.5% between 2009 and 2014
                                                                                  • Figure 22: Best and worst case forecast of UK sales of cut flowers and houseplants, 2009-19
                                                                                • Flowers account for 83% of market
                                                                                  • Figure 23: Consumer spending on cut flowers, at current and constant prices, 2009-19
                                                                                • House plant market contracts
                                                                                  • Figure 24: Consumer spending on houseplants, at current and constant prices, 2009-19
                                                                                • Market to see some growth
                                                                                  • Figure 25: Consumer spending on cut flowers and houseplants, at current and constant prices, 2009-19
                                                                                • Factors used in the forecast
                                                                                • Channels to Market

                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                    • Supermarkets dominate the market
                                                                                      • Figure 26: Trade channels for cut flowers and houseplants, by percentage share, 2014 (est)
                                                                                    • Florists hold a third of market
                                                                                      • Figure 27: Trade channels for cut flowers, by percentage share, 2014 (est)
                                                                                    • Houseplants
                                                                                      • Online
                                                                                        • Website visitor numbers
                                                                                          • Figure 28: Leading retail websites selling flowers/gifts/greeting cards, by unique visitor numbers, April 2014
                                                                                      • Brand Communication and Promotion

                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                          • Reduced advertising spend on flowers
                                                                                            • Figure 29: Main monitored advertising expenditure, flowers and houseplants, 2011-14
                                                                                          • Interflora dominates
                                                                                            • Figure 30: Main monitored advertising expenditure, flowers and houseplants, by advertiser, 2011-14
                                                                                          • Television accounts for half of flower adverts
                                                                                            • Figure 31: Main monitored advertising expenditure, flowers and houseplants, by media type, 2011-14
                                                                                            • Figure 32: Main monitored advertising expenditure, flowers and houseplants, by media type, 2014
                                                                                        • Companies and Products

                                                                                          • James Finlays Ltd
                                                                                            • Financial performance
                                                                                              • Figure 33: James Finlays financial data, 2012-13
                                                                                            • Sunflora
                                                                                              • Winchester Growers
                                                                                                • Financial information
                                                                                                  • Figure 34: Winchester Growers financial data, 2012-13
                                                                                                • Dutch Flower Group
                                                                                                  • Financial information
                                                                                                    • Figure 35: Intergreen UK financial data, 2012-13
                                                                                                  • Butters Group
                                                                                                    • Financial information
                                                                                                      • Figure 36: Butters Group financial data, 2012-13
                                                                                                    • Leading relay organisations
                                                                                                      • Interflora
                                                                                                        • Financial information
                                                                                                          • Figure 37: Interflora financial information, 2012-13
                                                                                                        • Euroflorist
                                                                                                          • Iflorist
                                                                                                            • Direct 2 Florist
                                                                                                              • Online operators
                                                                                                                • Serenata Flowers
                                                                                                                  • Prestige
                                                                                                                    • Arena
                                                                                                                      • The Real Flower Company
                                                                                                                      • The Consumer – Where Flowers and Plants are Purchased

                                                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                                                          • What we asked
                                                                                                                            • Supermarkets dominate sector
                                                                                                                              • Figure 38: Where cut flowers and houseplants were purchased in the last 12 months in-store and online, November 2014
                                                                                                                            • Florists draw young men and older women
                                                                                                                              • People spend £7 more when buying flowers from florists
                                                                                                                                • Where people shop for flowers by age
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 39: Profile of consumers who have purchased cut flowers from a florist or supermarket chain in the last 12 months in-store and online, by age group, November 2014
                                                                                                                                • Where plants are bought
                                                                                                                                  • Who buys flowers and plants?
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 40: Profile of people who have purchased cut flowers and/or houseplants in the last 12 months, by gender, age group and socio-economic group, November 2014
                                                                                                                                  • In-store vs online purchases
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 41: Where people have purchased split by in-store and online, November 2014
                                                                                                                                  • Women buy more online from a florist than men
                                                                                                                                    • Nine in ten buy in-store from supermarkets
                                                                                                                                    • The Consumer – Who Were the Flowers or Plants Purchased For?

                                                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                                                        • What we asked
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 42: People who have purchased cut flowers or houseplants for themselves or someone else, November 2014
                                                                                                                                          • A third of men buy flowers for themselves
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 43: Profile of cut flower purchasers who have bought for themselves or someone else, by gender and age group, November 2014
                                                                                                                                          • Over-35s buy flowers as a gift
                                                                                                                                            • Tesco shoppers tend to buy flowers as a gift
                                                                                                                                            • The Consumer – Amount Spent on Flowers and Plants

                                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                                • What we asked
                                                                                                                                                  • Average spend on flowers for gifting is £12.40
                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 44: Average amount spent on buying cut flowers and houseplants on each purchase, November 2014
                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 45: Average amount spent on buying cut flowers on each purchase, by demographics, November 2014
                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 46: Average amount spent on buying houseplants on each purchase, by demographics, November 2014
                                                                                                                                                • The Consumer – How Often Flowers and Plants are Purchased

                                                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                                                    • What we asked
                                                                                                                                                      • People buy flowers for themselves 17 times per year
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 47: How often people buy cut flowers and/or houseplants for themselves, November 2014
                                                                                                                                                      • Young buy plants more frequently than older consumers
                                                                                                                                                        • People buy flowers as gifts nine times per year
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 48: How often people buy cut flowers and/or houseplants for someone else, November 2014
                                                                                                                                                        • Houseplants not frequently bought as gifts
                                                                                                                                                        • The Consumer – What People Look For When Purchasing Cut Flowers

                                                                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                                                                            • What we asked
                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 49: What people look for when purchasing cut flowers for themselves or someone else, November 2014
                                                                                                                                                              • Fresh flowers are number one factor
                                                                                                                                                                • Colour
                                                                                                                                                                  • Singles attracted by smell
                                                                                                                                                                    • Some 40% of women know what flower they want
                                                                                                                                                                      • Low cost is not a priority
                                                                                                                                                                        • Affluent ABs look at presentation
                                                                                                                                                                          • Young look for unique flowers
                                                                                                                                                                            • Online buyers look for seasonal and UK grown flowers
                                                                                                                                                                            • The Consumer – Attitudes towards Buying Flowers and Houseplants

                                                                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                • What we asked
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 50: Attitudes towards buying flowers and/or houseplants, November 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Over-45s buy flowers to brighten up their home
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Young opt for other gifts over flowers
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Only over-55s prefer plants
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Men look for UK grown flowers
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Choosing own flowers for bouquet
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Flowers to say sorry
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Only older people favour garden plants

                                                                                                                                                                                              Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                                                                              • Bank of England
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Waitrose

                                                                                                                                                                                              Cut Flowers and Houseplants - UK - February 2015

                                                                                                                                                                                              £1,995.00 (Excl.Tax)