Ah.. romance fills the air. Again.
Happy Valentine my love! Yes it’s all about love this month, isn’t it?
$12.8 billion worth of love!
American consumers spent $12.8 billion on Valentine’s Day last year, or on average about $100 each, according to the National Retail Federation. The figures, which include the cost of dining out, put the average 18- to 24-year-old’s spending at $154.65. The dollars dropped to $78.30 for 25- to 34-year-olds.
And 189 million roses worth of love in 2006.
- 15% of U.S. women send themselves flowers on Valentine’s Day.
- 73% of people who buy flowers for Valentine’s Day are men, while only 27 percent are women.
- About 1 billion Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged each year. That’s the largest seasonal card-sending occasion of the year, next to Christmas.
- About 3% of pet owners will give Valentine’s Day gifts to their pets.
- California produces 60 percent of American roses, but the vast number sold on Valentine’s Day in the United States are imported, mostly from South America.
- $45 million will be spent on food (including chocolate) and wine.
And those producing all of the above for us… what about them? Do they feel loved? They pick the flowers and roses and yet cannot afford to give one to their loved ones. They harvest the cacao plant to make the chocolate we enjoy but can’t give the same to their children!
So where’s the love?
We’ve become so immersed in this phony occasion that under the guise of love, we seem to be supporting some sort of slavery in a sense. Do we express love to those who made, what we consider simple affordable pleasures, and appreciate them? How many do you think are deprived or don’t really have anything to give – to express their love the way we do?
This Valentine’s, if you do decide to contribute to this year’s statistics, remeber the person whose fingers were pricked by the rose you delivered. Remember the look on the face of a child who picked the leaves that produced the sweet chocolate melting in your mouth, yet most likely, never tasted it him/herself.
Better yet, just tell your loved ones you love them. Don’t contribute to slavery!