“Miami International Airport receives 88 percent of the imported cut flowers that come into the United States. The cut flower industry is a $15 billion industry in the United States, 200,000 jobs.” Christopher Maston, CBP Port Director. https://www.miamiherald.com/living/article132374309.html
About 70% of the cut flowers presently sold in the USA are imported. Over 90% comes from Colombia, Ecuador and the Netherlands.
- Roses are the main imported flower with 41% of the share. Other important flowers are chrysanthemums (14%), carnations (7%) alstroemerias (5%) and gypsophilas (2%).
- Remaining share is composed by about 50 different flower types and may come in consumer-ready bouquets. Tropical flowers have a small share, this segment is composed mainly by orchids.
About 90% of flower volume imported each year into the USA enters via Miami. 5% enters via Los Angeles and 3% via New York.
- A large proportion of imports arrive by air and are then distributed by ground to the rest of the country, in refrigerated trucks.
- Sea transport is emerging as an option. Flowers are shipped in cold containers under vacuum (CO2), which stops the maturation process.
During the 2017 Valentine’s Day season from January 1st to February 14th, CBP agriculture specialists nationwide intercepted 823 actionable pests and processed more than 1 billion cut flower stems.
Miami International Airport ranks first among U.S. ports of entry for shipments of cut flower imports with approximately 89 percent of fresh-cut flowers nationwide, followed by Los Angeles. During the 2017 Valentine’s Season, CBP’s Miami Field Office inspected over 957,839,500 million stems of cut flowers.
Every year more flowers embark on this trip. Imports to the U.S. have increased by over 30 percent in the past 10 years. Miami is the Ellis Island of flowers; over 80 percent of all flowers imported to the U.S. come through its port district.
The most imported cut flowers are imported from Colombia and Ecuador into Miami.