Page 8

FROM 2020 INTO 2021 What trends do you predict?

Blue Diamond MD Alan Roper hasn't been able to leave Guernsey since the start of Lockdown 1, which started just after the annual Blue Diamond Awards

Hopefully more certainty in both our business and social lives as 2021 progresses. Whilst currently physical business events such as exhibitions, conferences and physical Meet the Buyers events are on hold, as the year progresses we are looking forward to networking with colleagues from across the industry, both here in the UK and at overseas trade shows and events in 2021. The gardening and leisure, horticultural and pet product sectors have adapted to changes and challenges unthought of a year ago: I’d like to see the positive spirit demonstrated by so many suppliers and retailers being nurtured and extended so that consumers can continue to value and support the strong, flexible and vibrant industry we are part of. Amanda Sizer-Barratt, Gardenex I have a feeling that we could see 25% growth next year based on what most had originally planned for this year’s sales. It would be lovely to see that level of growth on this year - a lovely dream. We are looking closely at present at key driving lines and do we have the capabilities to try and compete against the supermarkets and discount stores. We will need the support of suppliers to help deliver on something like this. Kevin Turley, Lakeside Garden Centre

the COVID-19 period. I think it falls to all of us in this wonderful gardening industry, to retain these new gardeners to keep that growth within the category. To achieve this, we’ll be working with all of our key partners to support them not only by providing our industry-leading product ranges but also via category management advice in-store and in the yard to improve the customer journey, as well as e-commerce and social media support. Mark Portman, Evergreen Garden Care I think everyone is looking forward to what the New Year will bring. The combination of garden centres now classed as essential retail and the huge increase in gardening as the hobby and pass time for many, we think spring should be very positive for the industry. We have increased production across all nurseries within the Farplants Group and are feeling very optimistic for the year ahead. We hope even more people give gardening a go this spring and that the industry can help inspire the next generation. To support this, we will continue to trial new varieties and develop new plant promotions, to keep consumers coming back to garden centres for more. Brett Avery, Farplants What challenges do you foresee?

Since lockdown, 2.7 million households have taken up gardening, so there’s a higher than ever demand for garden care products, particularly growing media. We’re expecting demand to stay high into 2021, as we see people appreciate and take advantage of the physical and mental wellbeing benefits of gardening and getting outside. At Evergreen Garden Care, we’ll be focusing on retaining these new gardeners, we have strong marketing plans for the year with MiracleGro on TV as we were in 2020 and exciting innovation to excite our consumers. To prepare for the 2021 season, we are building our stocks in anticipation of consumer demand and we are confident that we are ready for another strong year. In fact, I’d say we’re really looking forward to another great season. We are aiming to keep new gardeners that have entered the category through

8 December 2020

As the 2020 trading year draws to a close our focus is on managing the supply chain - there are a lot of problems brewing within the supply chain that we will have to face after Christmas. CONTINUED ON PAGE 11

Farplants were in full swing with garden centre deliveries in March. But then...


• Garden furniture • Water features • Garden heating • Plants – as people enjoy the opportunity to rearrange their garden through the seasons • Larger plants and container planting – with the ability to move them if consumers move property • British grown plants • Succulents, grasses and ferns • Plants that will give instant impact and plants that are perfect for beginners. • Grow Your Own - increased growing of edibles – everything from the basics to edible flowers will boom, but in small quantities. Variety will truly be the spice of life! • Dwarf fruit or family trees to give greater variety without overpowering smaller gardens • Inside out/home décor - houseplants • A greater focus on wellness and mindfulness • Continued interest in garden and home projects (with many companies continuing with a partial work from home policy). • Increased shopping online. The result of this is that as an industry, we need to ensure we are engaging with consumers online, whilst also maintaining in-store engagement. • ‘Green’ credentials, sustainable gardening products and transparency. Consumers want to know more about the source of their gardening products and packaging and are keen to understand how sustainable garden care products are.

What would be the top item on your wish list (aside from good weather at the right time)?

• A good trade deal, free movement of goods to and from Europe unincumbered by red tape and tax levies! • A successful vaccine rollout so we can get back to some sort of normality. • A happy, healthy nation of gardeners where the only challenge is dealing with the queues at the tills • For the time when all players in our industry can meet freely again in person and we can celebrate the Federation of Garden & Leisure Manufacturer’s 60th anniversary during 2021 in style! • Life returning to normal enabling more social interaction across the industry and internally with our teams. • It would be great to get out and see all our customers in person. Zoom has been a fantastic tool but there is nothing like seeing people face to face. • To see our industry grow and homes around the country get back to supporting garden centres based on the skill sets we have and the support and advice we can offer over the multiples.

Profile for Garden Trade News

GTN December 2020 - Garden Trade News, UK  

In this issue of news and information for garden centre professionals: Noma is coming for you. Back to the future – the year that was and wh...

GTN December 2020 - Garden Trade News, UK  

In this issue of news and information for garden centre professionals: Noma is coming for you. Back to the future – the year that was and wh...