It’s Saint Valentine’s Day and truckloads of roses have been loaded onto displays and in coolers for the past few weeks. The flowers have caused the Miami outbound lanes to bloom for drivers pulling refrigerated trailers.
The trailers meet cargo planes at the Miami International Airport, where the high-priced flowers arrive from nurseries in Columbia and Ecuador. MIA is well-known for its citrus market and is one of the best-equipped cold-storage airports in the world.
Miami is also well-known for its poor-paying long-haul lanes. But for the first six weeks after New Year’s Day, the reefer lanes ramp up in value due to the necessity to get the flowers on display and sold ASAP.
Many carriers will find it wise to work with brokers that specialize in hauling time and temperature-sensitive freight. While the number of flowers needing to be hauled will drop after St. Valentine’s Day, it is a year-round business and interested carriers should start making inroads sooner rather than later.
A brief history on Saint Valentine’s Day and why we give roses
It is thought that Saint Valentine’s Day is due to the actions of a Roman Catholic priest, Valentinus of third-century Rome. He is said to have held marriage ceremonies for young couples after Emperor Claudius II outlawed them so he could acquire more young, single men for his army.
Another possible reason is that Valentine may have been killed for attempting to help Christians escape harsh Roman prisons. According to one tale, an imprisoned Valentine fell in love with a young girl, his jailor’s daughter.
She supposedly visited him during his confinement. Before his death, he wrote her a letter signed “from your Valentine,” an expression that led to the giving of cards with the saying written on them.
Red roses come from Greek and Roman murals, showing the flowers as part of Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love’s depictions. The tradition of giving Valentine’s Day flowers goes back to the late 17th century, during the reign of King Charles II of Sweden. During a trip to Persia, King Charles II was exposed to the language of flowers and their meanings.
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