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Abstract

Historically, plant purchases frequently occur in physical retail centers (e.g., mass merchandisers, garden centers, etc.). The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in the adoption of retail measures to reduce disease transmission and spread, including stay-at-home/lockdown orders, retail store closures, limited retail occupancy and social distancing. Consequently, consumers’ ability to shop for products in-store was impacted and opened the opportunity to use nontraditional sales methods. This report provides a summary of consumers’ perceived plant purchasing behavior in the southeast U.S. Data was collected using an online survey which was conducted during the last week of July 2020. Responses were collected from an online panel of consumers in eight southeast states. A total of 670 consumers from Alabama (n=67), Florida (n=121), Georgia (n=168), Louisiana (n=37), Mississippi (n=25), North Carolina (n=63), South Carolina (n=120) and Tennessee (n=69) completed the survey. The survey addressed consumers’ shopping behavior for ornamental plants, how those behaviors changed during the pandemic and their anticipated shopping behavior after the pandemic.

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