New research has shown how imports of flowers into the UK have boomed thanks to the EU single market, driving down costs and improving costs for consumers.
Since 1988 imports into the UK of roses have increased fourteenfold from £12m to £168m a year, while imports of chrysanthemums have gone up fivefold from £24m to £109m. Almost all of these flowers come from the Netherlands, with massive imports into the UK worth £427m a year.
Robert Roodenburg, Director of the Dutch Association of Wholesalers in Floricultural products (VGB), commented:
“The UK, as Holland's second largest export country of cut flowers and potplants, is a success story for both Dutch exporters and their British clients. UK retailers, garden centres and florists have seen a spectacular growth in the last decades, thanks to EU's seamless borders for exports, transport and administrative handling.
"Combined with local production, British customers now have the largest choice in affordable flowers and potplants ever. Let's keep up the good business within the EU together.”
Catherine Bearder MEP, spokesperson for the Lib Dem EU referendum campaign, commented:
"You don't have to be in love with the EU to recognise the huge benefits we get from being part of this club.
"From cheaper flowers to lower phone bills when you go abroad, being in Europe means a better deal for British consumers."