The Interflora World Cup was a first in more ways than one, it was the first to be held in the UK and the first to host Interflora’s inaugural ‘Most Sustainable Floristry Innovation Award’ with five finalists showcasing innovations in sustainability across products and services for the floral industry.
Displayed within the main hall, the area where the innovations were on show had also been decorated with sustainability in mind. Elaine Mary of Petal Power in Shavington, Cheshire, (part of Interflora’s Core Florist Sustainability Forum) had created three floral installations using flowers and foliage dried from waste flowers in her shop and in doing so inspired many others to try the same.
Over the course of the show, visitors were able to examine the products close-up, talk to the innovators, and most importantly cast their vote with the results being announced on the final day of the World Cup. This interaction sparked many conversations regarding sustainability not just within the industry but also the wider world.
The five finalists were:
A not-for-profit organisation, repurposing used flowers from weddings and events into natural confetti, bringing sustainability and quality to the confetti market and to raise money for cancer charities by doing so.
A network of almost 1000 small-scale UK growers, supplying seasonal, locally grown flowers and foliage to florists, reducing flown imports.
Sustainable, frost proof pots manufactured from 100% recycled ropes and fishing nets collected from Scottish beaches and harbours during beach cleans of ocean plastic.
A circular system aimed at reducing the amount of floristry green waste that ends up in landfill by collecting from florist shops and composting it for future flower growing.
Derived from corn, this compostable, non-toxic, floral foam alternative is safe for the environment and can be used in all aspects of floristry.
And the winner was…
PhoamLabs, with their potentially ground-breaking plant-based medium for arranging flowers, something which the industry has been desperate for and for which, up until now, there has been no satisfactory replacement.
And finally…True to Interflora’s aim to make the World Cup as sustainable as possible nothing went to waste. After the event there was a huge flower sale outside Manchester Central which raised £1700 for a local hospice, the remaining unsold flowers were gathered up by the Confetti Club to be dried and repurposed.
Su Whale is a florist and freelance writer with over twenty-five years' experience in the floristry industry. She is the author and publisher of three best-selling books: Cut Flowers, 4th edition (2020) Cut Foliage, 2nd Edition, (2021) and Houseplants (2019), all bookshelf essentials for the professional florist.