April 29, 2011
How Appealing Are Biodegradable Containers?
One of the most widely discussed topics in the floriculture industry stemming from consumers exhibiting greater degrees of environmental awareness is the issue of environmental sustainability. The sustainability movement has led to a desire for products that not only solve the needs of consumers, but are also produced and marketed using sustainable production and business practices. Consumers increasingly place a greater emphasis on product packaging, and the emphasis has carried over to the greenhouse and floral sectors in the form of biodegradable pots. Although various forms of eco-friendly pots have been available for several years, their marketing appeal has been limited. But with the recent availability of more attractive biodegradable plant containers, a renewed interest in their suitability in the floriculture sector and their consumer acceptance has emerged. The Study The objective of our study, funded by the American Floral Endowment and the Horticultural Research Institute, was to determine the […]
April 25, 2011
Consumer Interest In ‘Green’ Plants
The ornamental plant industry consists of a few large- and many medium- and small-scale growers. In recent years, the intense competition from large domestic and international growers has forced medium- and small-scale farmers to identify and explore new niche markets for their products through value-added marketing. Discovering a profitable niche market is a complicated task because consumer demand is highly diversified. Organically grown and locally grown food products have become increasingly popular in recent years. There is a belief that the demand for organic and sustainable floral products is increasing in the United States due to an emerging consumer segment focused on health and fitness, the environment, personal development, sustainable living and social justice. Our research focused on two questions: 1) Are some consumers more interested in ornamentals, vegetable transplants and herbs produced in sustainable ways than conventionally grown plants? and 2) Do some consumers have different levels of interest […]
March 31, 2011
The Value Of Biodegradable Containers
What drives a consumer to purchase one plant over another? Logical factors include plant type, need and price. But as more consumers begin to take note of environmental impacts associated with their households and the products they buy, the need to personify your product as meeting this “green” standard is essential. There are several ways firms can capitalize on this transition consumers are making to being “green,” including implementing new production techniques, lowering carbon footprint within your operation or offering plants in a more environmentally sustainable potting container. Unlike new production techniques and lowering carbon footprint, introducing biodegradable containers has the potential to offer a relatively easy and cost-effective means to target the “environmental consumer.” The potential for new biodegradable potting containers is good. In a recent study by Hall et al. (2010), approximately 84 percent of consumers valued a biodegradable potting container to the traditional plastic pot. Furthermore, four […]
February 18, 2011
On Sustainability: No Two Consumers Are Alike
Savvy marketers rely on the principles of customer segmentation and product targeting to more efficiently allocate scarce resources and effectively reach groups of consumers with similar preferences or demands. It would appear as though many people have jumped on the eco-train, but to what extent have people who purchased plants, many of them gardeners, adopted eco-practices like recycling and composting? Previous research shows some consumers are willing to pay a premium price for green products and share attitudes that are favorable toward the environment. Premium-priced products are assumed to be more profitable, and often are. Still, relatively little is known about gardeners and their ecological attitudes, practices or behaviors. Our objective was to identify and profile consumer segments with regard to their gardening purchases. Are gardeners more eco-friendly? We sought to determine whether there were differences in their eco-friendly attitudes and behaviors, such as recycling. Our underlying belief was that […]
January 19, 2011
What Are Growers Doing About Sustainability?
Consumer and market interest in green, environmentally friendly, organic, local and sustainable products has encouraged much discussion and debate about sustainable production practices and certification in the commercial floriculture industry. Many ask: “What is sustainable production and why should I become certified?” Depending on who you ask, you will get a variety of opinions and answers. Broadly defined, the goal of sustainable production is to reduce environmental degradation; maintain, enhance agricultural productivity and profitability; promote economic viability; conserve resources and energy; and maintain stable communities and quality of life. As we all know, the floriculture industry is not alone when it comes to selling ornamental plants. It is part of the collective $148 billion green industry that includes nursery and greenhouse producers and landscape service providers, as well as wholesale and retail distributors. Therefore, it is important for us to determine what the entire green industry is doing in terms […]
December 22, 2010
Biodegradable Containers: How Appealing Are They?
One of the most widely discussed topics in the floriculture industry stemming from consumers exhibiting greater degrees of environmental awareness is the issue of environmental sustainability. The sustainability movement has led to a desire for products that not only solve the needs of consumers, but are also produced and marketed using sustainable production and business practices. Consumers increasingly place a greater emphasis on product packaging, and the emphasis has carried over to the greenhouse and floral sectors in the form of biodegradable pots. Although various forms of eco-friendly pots have been available for several years, their marketing appeal has been limited. But with the recent availability of more attractive biodegradable plant container. The Study The objective of our study, funded by the American Floral Endowment and the Horticultural Research Institute, was to determine the characteristics of biodegradable pots that consumers deem most desirable, and to solicit their willingness to pay […]
September 16, 2009
Containers: Paper Or Plastic?
Sustainability has become a commonly discussed topic within the floriculture industry. Few studies, however, have quantified whether conversion to a sustainable production practice is a worthy investment. Therefore, we conducted a case study for a medium-sized Indiana commercial greenhouse interested in substituting plastic 4.5-inch pots with Ellepots for bedding plants. Ellepots are “pots” made from degradable non-woven paper that wraps around the growing media and can be planted directly into the soil. To determine if the proposed practice was a worthy investment, a net present value (NPV) and financial feasibility analysis was conducted. Net present value is defined as the discounted sum of the projected series of net cash flows for an investment, including the initial investment and the terminal value of the investment at the end of the planning horizon. NPV can be used as a strategic planning tool to determine the worthiness of a new investment. For this […]
July 24, 2009
Consumer Perceptions Of Sustainably Produced Poinsettias
Greenhouse growers across the United States continuously hear the word “sustainability” and often speculate whether this is another marketing program or a consumer-driven initiative that must be put into practice for their continued economic success in a very competitive environment. Most growers, however, have not heard of Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability (LOHAS). Have you? This is an emerging market segment that is focused on health and fitness, the environment, personal development, sustainable living and social justice. The LOHAS market represents 41 million people in the United States who spend $209 billion annually on socially and environmentally responsible products. If this segment of the population is purchasing environmentally friendly products, are they interested in locally, organically or sustainably produced poinsettias? Figure 1. This grower promotes crops as locally grown. The Research Previous Purdue research has shown 96 percent of greenhouse growers had heard of sustainable floriculture and the majority viewed […]
March 23, 2018
Meister Media Worldwide Forms Joint Venture With NXT Ev…
The first event of the joint venture between Meister Media (parent company of Greenhouse Grower) and NXT Events will be “Growing Innovations,” which will debut in November 2018 in Las Vegas, NV.
March 23, 2018
Bell Nursery’s Gary Mangum Provides Insight on De…
In light of the March 14 announcement that Bell Nursery Holdings LLC had been acquired by Central Garden & Pet, Greenhouse Grower caught up with Bell Nursery CEO Gary Mangum to get the backstory on the deal. Here is our full interview with Mangum.
March 23, 2018
New Light Management System Aims for Consistent Plant P…
The HelioCORE light control software system is designed to help growers automatically manage supplemental lighting and adjust schedules and intensity in real time.
March 22, 2018
Why Your Efforts to Sell Plants Fall Short and What You…
It’s time to look at outside industries for ideas and inspiration on what we can do to operate more efficiently in today’s economy.
March 21, 2018
New Lighting Series is Adaptable to Several Environment…
The NeoPAR series from Illumitex is designed to foster photosynthesis in all stages of plant development.
March 20, 2018
California Spring Trials 2018 Central Region Preview: B…
Check out this California Spring Trials 2018 Central Region preview of new varieties from Ball Horticultural Co., Dümmen Orange, PlantHaven International, and Suntory Flowers.
March 20, 2018
Survey Says: Poinsettia Prices, Sales, and Production I…
Traditional reds were still bestsellers, but interest continues to grow in white and novelty varieties. Greenhouse Grower’s annual survey provides an in-depth look at the holiday season.
March 20, 2018
Seed Your Future Dinner Celebrates Focus on New, Young …
During a Seed Your Future Leadership Meeting Fundraiser dinner at Longwood Gardens, Pennsylvania's Ag Secretary thanked the Seed Your Future initiative for its efforts to create awareness of horticulture and careers in horticulture.
March 19, 2018
Green Fuse Botanicals Expanding Distribution Network
The company’s expanded product line has created an opportunity to broaden its reach to the grower community through a wider range of brokers.
March 18, 2018
New Soil Amendment From Kemin Promotes More Efficient N…
Valena, a soil amendment sourced from a proprietary strain of Euglena gracilis (algae) rich in beta-glucan, is designed to support the growth of healthy and strong plants.
March 17, 2018
National Garden Bureau Once Again Bringing Garden Write…
The National Garden Bureau is again hitting the road for California Spring Trials (CAST) with influential garden communicators, with the goal of connecting breeders and brokers with consumers via these influencers with large followings.
March 14, 2018
Dramm Offering New Video Chat Option for Service Issues…
The Dramm Corporation recently introduced two new resources for its greenhouse grower customers to deal with indoor growing conditions.
March 14, 2018
Bell Nursery Acquired by Central Garden & Pet
Greenhouse Grower just learned that Bell Nursery, headquartered in Elkridge, MD, has been acquired by Central Garden & Pet Company, a leading innovator, producer, and distributor of branded and private label products for the lawn and garden and pet supplies markets.