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Friday, 4 February, 2000, 13:03 GMT
Bangalore's Valentine bloom

European flower market Huge demand for the flowers across Europe


By Habib Beary in Bangalore

Flower traders in the southern Indian state of Karnataka say close to 80 tonnes of red roses are being shipped out to Europe ahead of Valentine's Day.

They say this is the single biggest consignment of flowers from the state so far.

The city of Bangalore accounts for close to 70% of India's total flower production and at least 80% of the country's red roses are grown in the city.

The President of the South Indian Floriculture Association, KS Ramakrishna, told the BBC that about 40 tonnes of red roses were being shipped out to Europe on Friday.

Another lot of roses will be sent out on Sunday, to reach Amsterdam about 10 days before Valentine's Day.

Mr Ramakrishna added that while half the flowers will be sold directly to flower dealers in Holland, the rest were to be sold at Amsterdam's auction centre.

The flower exports came about after parleys between local flower dealers in Bangalore and their counterparts in Europe that started many months ahead of Valentine's day.

At least $2m worth of red roses are being sent to meet the huge demand across Europe.

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See also:
13 Feb 98 |  Valentine
The accidental patron
13 Feb 98 |  Valentine
The things we do for love
12 Feb 99 |  UK
Valentine e-rotica
12 Feb 98 |  UK
Arguments, rows and sulks, 'til death us do part

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