In Australia, over 40 million cut flowers are sent to landfill each year. Sydney based start-up Floraly is solving this problem by offering farm-to-table blooms that cut floral waste by up to 90%.
Floraly sends flowers fresh from the grower, delivering bouquets by post as soon as one-day after being cut. By skipping the middle-man they’re able to offer full-size arrangements from just $40 including delivery, and because flowers are sent in bud, they bloom when they reach customers and last around a week longer in the vase.
The industry’s problem with flower waste stems from the fact that most online stores aren’t actually the ones who end up supplying customers with flowers. Approximately two thirds of online flower orders are made through floral networks , which are similar to booking agents like Expedia. These networks take 25 – 30% commission while simply forwarding orders on to local florists to do the work. Because of the unpredictable demand, managing stock is virtually impossible and a huge number of flowers end up in the bin.
However, delivering flowers fresh from the farm isn’t easy either, and required the team at Floraly to re-think the traditional logistics process. Alec Ramsey, co-founder of Floraly, explains,
“People questioned whether posting flowers was even possible. The secret lies in designing breathable but protective packaging, choosing the right flower varieties, and posting flowers soon after being cut. By sending them in bud form, we make sure they spend their time blooming in your vase instead of in a flower shop somewhere, so you enjoy them longer.”
Erin Finn, a Sydney-based freelance florist, credits the business for pushing the boundaries. “Floraly has introduced a completely new way to buy flowers. Not only are you receiving a lovely gift, you’re feeling the benefit of making those creative juices flow, all while supporting a sustainable business.”
The path to starting Floraly was anything but straightforward. Alec and his co-founder Stefan Muff founded their previous startup – online graduation supplier Churchill Gowns – in Sydney in 2012, growing it to become one of the largest suppliers in Australia. In 2016 they decided to expand, and partnered with London-based entrepreneur, Oliver Adkins, who was able to push the Churchill Gowns brand in the UK.
“After hitting some great milestones last year, we wanted to send our UK team some flowers, and came across a London-based company called Bloom & Wild that does farm-fresh flowers by the post. We loved the idea, and realized that nothing like that existed in Australia.
“People want to send a beautiful gift – not the tacky, garish arrangements you find at your local supermarket. That’s why everything we do is very detail oriented, from our stylish bouquets through to the bespoke gift box and flower care booklet that come with every order.
“We’ve had some fantastic feedback from customers, all of whom really love that our flowers are farm-fresh, and have spent the past few months perfecting our logistics processes. I’m happy to say that 99% of our deliveries have arrived on-time, and we’re excited to start selling Australia-wide.”
Floraly is now taking orders through their website at www.floraly.com.au.