Young German people buy hardly any flowers

    The German market for horticultural products is a stable market with an annual turnover of around €8.5 billion. There are a few clear trends that characterise the German market at the moment. This week, we’ll discuss one of those trends each day. Trend number 5: Young German people buy hardly any flowers.

    Both BGI and FloraHolland indicate that the majority of consumers of plants and flowers in Germany are older people. Young people buy hardly any flowers at all.

    Germans mostly purchase flowers as a gift. According to FloraHolland’s consumer tracker, 14.9% of all flower purchases consist of corporate gifts, 12.7% is for personal use and 11.5% are gifts. Purchase drivers mentioned by consumers were personal use (6.7%), funerals/graves (9%) and corporate use (12.2%).

    “Young people prefer gifts other than flowers, but when something bad happens, like the terrorist attack in Berlin, they do show up with a bunch of flowers,” says Marcel Rijksen, accountmanger FloraHolland. “That’s an exception, though. It’s a challenge for the entire flower industry to get young people in Germany interested in buying flowers.”

    Rijksen explains that the younger generation also has very different purchasing habits than the older ones. Young people don’t go to a florist. As BGI points out, it’s very important to focus on something that’s close to their own experience and interests, when you’re developing promotional campaigns that target young people. This concerns both the actual plants and flowers and the distribution channels.

    German youth is very digitally oriented. And that’s where German plant and flower sellers are lagging behind for example the Netherlands. There are very few companies which sell plants and flowers online. Two exceptions are Blume 2000 and consumer brand Certi.

    The younger generation does buy indoor plants, though. Especially young adults between 18 and 30 years old buy indoor plants. Mostly for their own personal use. Rijksen: “Purchase drivers mentioned by young people with regards to plants are for example that they purify the air or make good decorative additions to the interior.”

    Robert Roodenburg, director of VGB, confirms that a joint survey, conducted by VBW and FloraHolland last year, showed that the German market for plants had expanded and that the main reason for this was the younger generation. “Plants appeal to young people in a different way than flowers. They fit in with the trend of sustainability and a greener life. And plants are easier to maintain as well.”