Valentine’s Day brings ‘blooming’ business to flower retailers

CRANSTON, R.I. (WLNE) – Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and flower shops say they’ve received thousands of orders and attribute part of the boom to people being stuck inside.

Inside the warehouse of RJ Carbone Floral Distributors, business is ‘blooming’ this holiday.

“Several hundred a day that we send out,” manager Rob Klein said. “That’s to our customers that in turn have all together thousands of orders.”

Carbone set up shop in Cranston more than 60 years ago. The business is a wholesale floral shop, so they import and sell flowers to retail stores, supermarkets and event companies all over New England.

“There’s a lot of business that comes out of the woodwork,” Klein said. “It’s a lot more than a normal day, week. It’s probably close to 10x the amount of work.”

The manager, Rob Klein, says they’ve been through a lot, but the pandemic has been one of the tougher challenges they’ve dealt with. A majority of their sales come from events like weddings and parties, which have dropped significantly since the pandemic started.

“It’s been hard. A lot of companies are working on lower staffing, less flights,” Klein said. “Most of the product comes from Columbia and Ecuador.”

However, this Valentine’s Day, there was no shortage of orders. Employees were hard at work as customers picked up boxes of flowers. Those will land on the shelves of stores where shops anticipate a boom in sales.

“Everybody feels good about getting flowers and I think when you’re stuck inside or working remotely and zooming all day then everybody feels good to get rewarded with some nice flowers,” Klein said.

He says he hopes the flowers will lift people up through this tough time and bring some hope that spring is coming.

“It’s great for the economy,” Klein said. “I hope everyone has a good holiday and that we can move into the spring and hopefully the vaccine helps out and they start opening up venues, being able to do weddings and events that have hurt us a lot.”

Categories: Cranston, News, Rhode Island