It is very difficult to discern in Australian if flowers have been grown on home soil and under Australian regulations, or if they are imported. Unlike food, Country of Origin labelling is currently not required for cut flowers. This makes it hard to know where flowers have been grown when shopping at florists, grocery stores, or flower markets.
The best way to ensure you are buying Australian grown flowers is firstly to ASK. ASK your florist where the flowers you are buying or using for your event, are grown. If you’re a florist, ASK your grower or wholesaler where the flowers they are selling are grown.
Whether you are a florist or a flower lover, here are some things to look out for...
- Flowers that look fake or unnatural in colour (including dried flowers) have likely been dyed using harsh chemicals. This practice is largely done overseas, so you can assume any dyed flowers you see have been imported.
- There are very few orchid types that are grown in Australia, e.g. phaleanopsis, vanda and Singapore orchids are almost
- always imported.
- Carnations and lisianthus are often imported and have very little information on the packaging. Look out for barcodes on plastic sleeves - these are scanned when passing through customs and indicate importation.
- Tropical leaves are also often imported, look out for stems wrapped in cotton wool and plastic - this is done so they can survive the long haul flights.
- Imported roses arrive in Australia tightly packaged in cardboard with their stems exposed so they can be dipped in a chemical bath before passing our borders, to prevent the spread of exotic pests and disease.
To reduce environmental impact and avoid imported flowers, ask before you buy and seek out florists who promote and provide Australian grown flowers.