Fresh as a chemically-treated flower

Marketplace Staff Feb 14, 2007


SCOTT JAGOW: Today’s the biggest day of the year for the fresh-cut flower business.A lot of those flowers come into the U.S. from Ecuador and Colombia at Miami’s airport. From our Americas Desk at WLRN, Dan Grech reports.

DAN GRECH: In the flower business, it takes just one bad rose to spoil the bunch.

Gustavo Jaramillo imports and distributes fresh cut flowers. He says the Department of Agriculture does a thorough inspection for bugs.

GUSTAVO JARAMILLO: If they find something they don’t like, they have instructions to incinerate the whole shipment.

Growers are wise to this. They spray their flowers with chemicals before shipping them to the U.S., so it’s rare to find an infected lot.

JARAMILLO: Once every 350 shipments, so it’s not a very common occurrence.

But those chemicals are something to consider when stop and smell your next rose.

In Miami, I’m Dan Grech for Marketplace.

JAGOW: There is an alternative: Flowers sold with the VeriFlora logo are grown without pesticides. Why does Valentine’s Day have to be so complicated? I’m Scott Jagow in Los Angeles. Just enjoy the day.

As a nonprofit news organization, our future depends on listeners like you who believe in the power of public service journalism.

Your investment in Marketplace helps us remain paywall-free and ensures everyone has access to trustworthy, unbiased news and information, regardless of their ability to pay.

Donate today — in any amount — to become a Marketplace Investor. Now more than ever, your commitment makes a difference.