Turkey is shipping more than 1.5 million carnations for Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral.
Florists are said to be working overtime in Turkey’s Antalya and Isparta provinces, which are both renowned for their flower industries, according to Turkish media.
Growers are reportedly turning to air cargo, instead of land freight, to fill the order of flowers that are to be used during the mourning period before Her Majesty’s funeral.
Royal palaces and residences all over Britain have seen millions of floral tributes being left at their gates.
The Queen died on Thursday, 8th September, at the age of 96 and her funeral will take place on at 11 AM, Monday, 19th September.
Her coffin is currently in the Edinburgh after it travelled by car from Balmoral Castle, her estate in Scotland, to the Scottish capital.
Tomorrow, Tuesday, 13th September, her coffin will travel to Edinburgh airport where it will be flown on board an RAF aircraft to London. On Wednesday, it will travel to Westminster Hall from Buckingham Palace where it will lie in state from Thursday to Sunday.
Turkish media reports that demand for carnations in the country has skyrocketed by up to 90 per cent, according to growers in Antalya and Isparta provinces.
Flower companies in Turkey have reportedly hired extra workers and increased hours. Turkish media quotes Selcuk Celebi, a member of the Antalya Commodity Exchange (ATB) Council and Cut Flower and Ornamental Plants Professional Committee as saying that orders began pouring in immediately after the death of the Queen was announced.
Celebi said: “The national mourning and funeral programme in the country is said to last 10 days.”
Celebi said that orders from the United Kingdom have now been given priority and added: “Due to the funeral, we have shifted our products, which we will have shipped by truck, into air shipments. While it takes seven to eight days with the truck, they have it in their hands the next day with the plane.”
The President of the Central Anatolian Ornamental Plants and Products Exporters’ Association, Ismail Yilmaz, told Turkish media that 600,000 to 700,000 flowers are shipped to the UK in normal times during this period, but this has now more than doubled and that they were struggling to meet demand.
Yilmaz said: “With the death of Queen Elizabeth, we estimate that this figure will reach at least 1.5 million during the funeral period.”
He added: “There is a serious increase in demands from the UK. Currently, we have clove-oriented production in the highlands. We expect this activity to continue for a certain period of time even after the funeral and mourning programme.”