Where Your Valentine’s Day Flowers Come From

The flowers flying into North Texas are coming from all over the world.

This year, D/FW International Airport has seen more flower shipments than ever before, which means more work for customs and a lot of Valentine's in North Texas.  

"The bulk of our flowers are coming in from the Netherlands, but we have seen an increase in flowers that are making their way into the U.S. from South America," D/FW Airport Customs and Border Protection supervisor Ray Haynes said. 

Agriculture Specialists at Customs and Border Protection are working around the clock.

"Some days we get about 500 boxes. Other days we get 200 to 300 boxes," Agricultural Cargo supervisor Heather Cook said. "This year, we've probably seen a 50 percent increase which might be because we have more flights coming into DFW."

From sorting to inspecting, agriculture specialists play a critical component to the CBP mission.

"[We're] looking for any kind of pest, which could be an insect or a disease that can be found in or on or with the flowers," Cook said. "If we find a pest on any of the flowers that we're examining, we quarantine them, we put the yellow tape on them, and we put them in a cooler until USDA tells us what kind of pest it is and then we go from there."

Once the flowers are good to go, they're split up and sent out to wholesalers, who send them to stores throughout the country.

Most of the flowers arriving at D/FW Airport will stay in North Texas.

"These flowers are meant for someone very special, so we'll do everything we can to ensure that when they arrive at your doorstep they are very safe," Haynes said.

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