Costa Farms bought EA

Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, ALJune 9, 2014

Did you know? I just heard today. What do you think?

Here is a link that might be useful: CF buys EA, April 2014

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Photo Synthesis

Thanks for sharing, I haven't heard about this until now.
I've bought many plants from both sources. They both sell pretty nice stuff. Tho, I don't know how I feel about this just yet. It's always best to have healthy competition in any market between different companies. Without it, we lose that competitive edge. Such as offering a better product at lower prices. I don't think that the quality of their plants will suffer any. I'm glad that they'll still keep the EA brand, but what's to stop their prices from increasing? When they no longer have to compete with the other guys, so to speak.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2014 at 12:14PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

I had the same thoughts - thanks for typing them out!

I'm concerned the names will get even more lax on the EA plants (as they are nonexistent on CF plants) if not disappear altogether. They're often wrong, but at least it's a start, "Well, it's not that..." A pessimistic thought compared to maybe the labels of CF farms plants will improve?

Being able to combine some areas, like R+D, personnel, marketing, theoretically this could lower prices through lowering operating costs, but as you said, the lack of competition will likely see static prices, if not higher.

At least one can't make a cheaper version of plants with inferior materials and engineering... put the original out of business, and sell the cheaper one at a higher price... a plant's either healthy or not.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2014 at 1:53PM
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paul_(z5 MI)

A bit saddeneding actually. While I rarely have bought plants produced by either company, I hate to see a long time company go extinct. I imagine that EA profits may have been down for them to sell out to CF.

It would not surprise me if prices creep up or name IDs get even more slipshod. It is never in the customers' best interest for a veritable monopoly to exist.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2014 at 2:58PM
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Hopefully this won't lead to a decline in quality, but if it does, that's another reason to focus on supporting
online retail nurseries. They often are better about properly naming their plants anyway.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2014 at 3:51PM
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I have to say, I like EA's selection more than Costa Farms. Also, I've noticed that Costa Farms seems to pot their plants in pure peat, whereas EA at least had potting mixes that looked like something I might want to grow a plant in.

I read that EA's founder passed away on March 30, and Costa Farms purchased EA on April 2. Maybe his passing had something to do with the sell?


This post was edited by plantomaniac08 on Tue, Jun 10, 14 at 0:23

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 12:19AM
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Angel farms as it was isn't likly to improve as CF plant tags find way into the pots departing the shiping area(s) of the former AF.
AF leagal requires then to terminate all of its employees. EA would ask and encouage ALL of the former AF employees to apply for a " QUALIFYING" position and become CF employees IF hired.

Basicly most to all former AF will be hired but it's bussness as usall from top bottom.

For exapmple: Even as the former book keeper from AF worknig for CF sees logo's and letter head will need to forfill CF standards.

The qualified AF soil makers that are hired by CF would be required to forfill EA soil making standards

All the way down to the former AF floor sweeper would be required forfill CF floor sweeping standards.

Who knows maybe CF will forfill some " newer & improved" standards over all with a CF logo as some standards where set by AF but I doubt it.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2014 at 4:24PM
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Hi purpleinopp,

I work at Costa Farms. We're working hard to keep up the Exotic Angel brand. We see Exotic Angel as our specialty line of plants --- so we'll continue to treat the plants the same way Herman Engelmann Greenhouses did: We'll continue to label plants by variety, we'll continue to use high-quality potting mixes, etc. Some of the benefits of the merger are that Costa Farms can help get Exotic Angel plants into some retailers they weren't available in before, and by combining forces with our research/development departments, we'll have a lot of really exciting plants coming out for both brands!

I saw that some of the posters commented on prices rising. If prices do rise, it's not from competition, but from the fact that our costs to grow plants have been going up. It's more expensive to ship plants across the country than it used to be. Fertilizer/electricity/other inputs are on the rise, too. Over time, if we're going to stay in business, we have to raise our prices. Our customers -- the retailers -- often pass the increases to home gardeners. That said, we're doing everything we can to reduce/control costs so we keep retail prices down.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2014 at 11:10AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Hi Justin. Welcome to Gardenweb! Thanks for your input. I think it's excellent that your organization would make this effort to communicate directly.

Glad to hear the intentions of the merger, and look forward to seeing what you describe 'in action.' (As soon as the Christmas trees get out of the way again. :+)

It's no mystery what plant shoppers want - a healthy specimen of something they don't already have! (For those who aren't just starting out with the basics.) Whatever can be done to send something different from what was sent before, to any particular store, should generate some action.

Thanks & have a great day!
- Tiffany

    Bookmark   November 4, 2014 at 4:04PM
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