Alaska Hardy Peony had a successful introduction to buyers from Canada during the 2019 Canada Nursery Inbound Trade Mission to Washington, Alaska, and Hawaii. The trade mission was coordinated by the Global Connect program of the Western United States Agricultural Trade Association (WUSATA), and funded through the USDA’s Market Access Program (MAP). The small family-operated agribusiness, based in Fritz Creek, started working with two new retail distributors in Canada as a result of attending the mission and has completed $10,000 to date in sales for their premium cut peonies. They also gained valuable knowledge about Canadian customs requirements and fine-tuned logistics for getting flowers to market quickly.
While very pleased with the sales results, Managing Partner Rita Jo Shoultz also found additional value in attending. “There is more to it than the money. The connections for the future sales and the ripple effect to other Alaska farms are important too. We have become a resource for growers to chat with so they could ship to Canada as well.”
The Shoultz family began Alaska Perfect Peony in 2006 when they decided to focus their nursery plant operations solely on peonies for the cut flower market. The family-operated business is dedicated to growing high-quality peony varieties on their 27 acre farm in the superior growing conditions found in Fritz Creek, Alaska.