We all would agree that the advent of the internet changed the way the world works forever — in mostly positive ways. However the internet has also opened the door for businesses that are less than scrupulous to prey on unsuspecting consumers. Regretfully, the flower business has fallen victim to some of these questionable practices through vultures known to the trade as ‘order gatherers’. What exactly is an order gatherer? In the floral trade it is an online company that gathers orders for floral deliveries and distributes them to fulfillment centers via some type of distribution channel. While perfectly legal, these organizations often disguise themselves as local florists and do not disclose handling fees and other charges that are a part of the total purchase price. How does this happen? Say you go online to send flowers to your grandmother who lives in Peterborough. You select a lovely bouquet, fill out the form, pay the $75.00 and the gift is on its way. Grandma is getting a beautiful $75 bouquet, right? Not exactly. The gathering organization failed to mention that they were keeping a $15.95 handling fee and $10.00 delivery charge for themselves, leaving the local florist who fills the order a total of $49.05 to design and hand-deliver your $75.00 bouquet. Assuming a local delivery fee of $10.00, that’s $39.05 worth of flowers being delivered to Grandma on your behalf. It is hard for us to see consumers treated this way. When you shop at East City Flower Shop you help to create local jobs for your friends and neighbours, we are able to pay taxes and support may local charities and organizations. PLUS when you shop locally, you get a much better arrangement for your hard earned money.