Florists prepare bouquets in a Sydney warehouse.
Florists have been busy preparing for the surge of sales ahead of Mother's Day on Sunday. Image by Bianca De Marchi/AAP PHOTOS
  • retail

Rising costs won’t stop that special bouquet for mum

Bray Boland May 11, 2024

The cost of living crisis might be hurting Australians but people are still expected to spend almost $1 billion buying presents for their mothers.

And flowers, as always, are expected to be the gift of choice.

But like most things, the cost of growing those beautiful flowers has also jumped with the industry facing serious challenges right through the supply chain.

“Everything has increased in price,” Sydney florist Peter Lynch said.

“The cost of growing flowers in Australia has gone up.

“Wages have gone up, super has gone up, casual rates have gone up – especially after COVID.”

Research by the Australian Retailers Association and Roy Morgan found that while there is expected to be a 7.5 per cent increase in Mother’s Day spending this year versus 2023, the reality is that as many as 400,000 fewer people will actually buy a gift because of the cost of living crunch.

The extra revenue will come from a predicted higher spend per person which the association believes is attributable to higher prices due to inflation and increased spending by people with more disposable income.

“Whilst the overall spend is higher this year, less Australians will be buying gifts – which shows how cost-of-living pressures are disproportionately affecting families,” association CEO Paul Zahra said.

Those people who are buying gifts this year for Mother’s Day are also being warned by NSW Fair Trading to be aware of scams.

Last year the government agency received 356 complaints about dodgy gift cards, vouchers and coupons.

“Don’t risk spending your hard-earned money on a faulty product or break the bank when shopping online,” NSW Fair Trading Commissioner Natasha Mann said.

“Before you hand over your money, stay informed, check what you’re buying and who you’re purchasing from.”

While other gifts such as alcohol and dinners out will be on people’s list for their mothers and loved ones, Mr Lynch said florists would be kept very busy over the weekend.

“When somebody receives a bunch of flowers, to see the smile on their face is… fantastic,” he said.

“They bring joy to people whether they’re up or down.

“A bunch of flowers will always make someone smile.”