Turkey to send over a million carnations to UK for Queen's funeral

Turkey to send over a million carnations to UK for Queen's funeral
Update: 13 September 2022 01:07
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Turkey started the the shipments of up to 1.5 million branches of carnations to be used in the mourning and funeral program of Queen Elizabeth II in the UK
The demand for flowers from Antalya and Isparta has increased by 90 percent in order to be used in the mourning and funeral program of Queen Elizabeth II in the United Kingdom. A great boom started in the cut flower sector in the two southern Turkey provinces. The carnation shipments for the funeral will reach up to 1.5 million branches,  Demiroren News Agency (DHA) reported.

Selcuk Celebi, a member of the Antalya Commodity Exchange (ATB) Assembly and the Cut Flowers and Ornamental Plants Committee, said that on the evening of September 8, following the news of the former Queen’s death, they started to receive extra flower orders from their customers in the UK.

Celebi said that the mourning and the funeral program will last for ten days but currently, there is no cut flower production in Antalya and the production in Isparta has decreased.

Selcuk Celebi said that they are having difficulties in making flower shipments with normal weekly contracts and that, with the new orders, they have given priority to the shipments to the UK. He added that due to the funeral, they have converted their land route  shipments to air shipments and while it would take seven or eight days by land route, the air shipments would arrive the next day.

Celebi, who expressed that the orders have increased by 80-90 percent with the death of Queen Elizabeth II, said that due to the production gap, they are trying to meet 40-50 percent of these order increases. Carnations are the type currently in production and they send carnations in every color. He also said that apart from the ten-day program, they expect to see this activity continue for a month.

 Noting that the cut flower producers in Antalya and Isparta send a significant amount of flowers to the Netherlands in addition to their direct exports to the UK, Celebi said that their customers in the Netherlands also sent their Turkish flowers to England for the funeral.

Ismail Yilmaz, Chairman of the Central Anatolian Ornamental Plants and Products Exporters' Association, stated that Isparta fills the deficit of Antalya between June and November, since Antalya is hot during the summer period, and said that they ensure that their production is carried throughout the year. He added that usually, during this time of the year they send 600-700 thousand branches of flowers to the UK per week but with the death of Queen Elizabeth II, they expect to send at least 1.5 million branches.

Rabia Yildirim, an agricultural engineer who is responsible for quality control and warehouse at a flower company, said that while they normally have a working schedule of eight hours a day due to the low production period in the region, they had to increase both the working hours and the number of workers after Elizabeth II's death.

Yildirim stated that during this process, they decided to work two extra hours a day and work on Sundays between September 11 and September 18. Yildirim noted that the capacity of 30 workers was increased to 45.