CalFlowers Goes to Washington


A group of CalFlowers board members and I joined more than 90 retail florists, wholesalers, suppliers and growers from all over the country to walk the halls of Congress last week. Our goal was to speak with our representatives about how they can support a healthy environment for cut flowers in our state.

We met with the staff members of Senator Kamala Harris, Senator Dianne Feinstein, and Speaker Nancy Pelosi to discuss our mutual interests for common sense solutions in the immigration system, and to advocate for the continuation of research funding and critical crop reporting.  We also expressed opposition to the effort to raise the federal minimum wage to $15.

Shout out to the Society of American Florists, who organize this event every year, and particular thanks to Shawn McBurney and Drew Gruenburg of SAF, who led the group in the development of our agenda and issues, and in delivering the message to our legislators.

I’d also like to thank the CalFlowers members who responded to our public issues survey in early January.  The results of that survey allowed us to align the concerns of our membership with the rest of the industry.

Here are a couple photos from our trip.



Left to right: Jamie Kitz, Sakata Inc.; Joost Bongaerts, President, Florabundance; Mike Mooney, General Manager, Dramm & Echter; Congressman Jimmy Panetta, House of Representatives; Frank Biddle, President and Owner, Francis Biddle International, Inc. (FBI Flowers); Matt Altman, Altman Plants. 


Left to right: Jamie Kitz, Sakata Inc.; Matt Altman, Altman Plants; Mike Mooney, General Manager, Dramm & Echter; Joost Bongaerts, President, Florabundance; Jeanne Boes, General Manager & COO, San Francisco Flower Mart; Michael LoBue, CEO of CalFLowers.


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