While I truly hope everyone enjoyed a pleasant Thanksgiving filled with things that bring you joy, I must acknowledge right off the bat that Dos Gringos did not “bring the happy” to some of you this season. Serious shortfalls in our signature Sunflowers created headaches, frustration, and worse. I want to apologize openly and honestly, and I want to be clear about our plans for mitigating the effects of any shortages in the future.
We had unusually high air and soil temperatures in San Diego County this fall. A portion of our Sunflower seeds on farms in this region burned in the ground, and we came up about 250,000 bunches short. The team realized we had a problem and jumped into action, and the Dos Gringos “can-do” spirit was on full display. We worked quickly to buy replacement product on the open market, we made the best substitutions we could, and we had FedEx at the ready round the clock to get what we could to you as quickly as possible. We did deliver smiles this season, but not enough to let me sleep at night.
The goal was to allocate as fairly as we could so no one came out empty-handed, but I know that’s little consolation when we’ve hyped Suns, you’ve hyped Suns, and everyone wants to go over the river and through the woods with Suns in hand. I also know that when it’s not our product, it’s not our quality, and there was disappointment in that category as well.
If you’ve been with DG for any length of time, you know what sticklers we are for balance and how carefully – with your help -- we plan before we plant. Thanksgiving may be the toughest holiday to “get just right.” We want plenty of Suns to meet your Thanksgiving orders and few by Black Friday, when green, red, and white rule the day. We make adjustments from one year to the next based on historical data, and we go with our best estimates.
Today we have diversified to a point where we now have four different growing regions – with four different climates – from which to harvest Suns and across which to spread the risk of problems. This year we added a trial run of Sunflowers in the California desert, and it did very well. Next year we’ll go all-out in this location to help meet demand. We will always look for and consider additional areas to plant. And we will increase the size of all of our plantings, putting more seeds in the ground on every farm. As always, if you have ideas and insights on how we can get better, anyone on this team is all ears and at your service!
As we move on to a strong finish to 2011, Metallic's are here and hot for the holidays! Be sure to check out our selections and featured bouquets.
We are redesigning and improving our product development process to ensure we can offer new products from the ground and new designs with those items. And we are putting the finishing touches on a “Client Calendar” that will keep everyone apprised of dates and deadlines for our key crops.
Happy, Healthy Holidays to All! Thank you for your business. Thank you for your friendship.
President & Chief Gringo