BENGALURU: It’s Valentine’s Day today. And most Valentines around the globe will say ‘I love you’ to their sweethearts with red roses from Bengaluru!
India shipped over 100 million stems of red roses to key Valentine’s Day markets across UK, West Asia, Australia, Japan, Singapore, Russia, New Zealand, Taiwan, Holland, Germany, Spain, China and Netherlands. More than half of these 100 million roses are grown in Bengaluru and Pune, while the rest are grown in Ethiopia and Kenya by Bengaluru-based Karuturi Global, the world’s single largest producer of cut roses.
Bengaluru and Pune are the lead players in India’s cut flower industry, which is pegged at over Rs 1,000 crore.
The International Flower Auction Bangalore (IFAB) here witnessed a flurry of activity in the last few days while preparing for huge Valentine’s Day shipments.
The cut flower markets are centred around events like Valentine’s Day, Chinese New Year, International Women’s Day, UK Mother’s Day, European Mother’s Day and French Mother’s Day.
The Indian diaspora too buys a lot of cut roses during Diwali, Dussehra, Ganesh Chaturthi and also during Indian weddings held overseas.
This year, Valentine’s Day falls on a Wednesday, Chinese New Year is celebrated from February 16 to 22, quickly followed by International Women’s Day on February 28 and then comes the British Mothers’ Day on March 8.
“Events are happening back to back in the international markets. Indian red roses are a must at these celebrations. Overall, it is a red hot season for rose growers in India,’’ said Ram Karuturi, president, South India Floriculture Association (SIFA). During this season, rose stem prices went up by 150% and peaked at Rs 16 in wholesale markets, from the earlier average of Rs 5 to 7. In the global markets, a single stem of red rose fetches anything between Rs 25 and 30. Sometimes prices could even go up by 200 to 300% depending on the demand-supply situation. Cut roses easily remain fresh in the wrap for a fortnight. On an average, rose growers in India earn a minimum of Rs 10 lakh per acre. Most roses grown in Bengaluru are auctioned at IFAB, where the auction facilities are in line with those in Holland and Japan to ensure a better price.