With a heavy heart we have decided to apply a minimum order charge of £15.00. Though we appreciate that some customers only wish to buy a single item, regrettably this results in a significant loss to ourselves. We charge £5.90 for postage and packing, but we estimate that the smallest box, irrespective of contents, costs about £1 to buy and £3.50 in wages to assemble, pack, tape up, address and get to the post office, and then costs either £3.70 or £5.57 to post. The VAT man also walks away with 20% of our charge, which is just under £1. This means that we are not only giving away the plant inside but it is actually costing us money to do so. We are committed to retaining a low postage cost for those ordering several items, so this minimum charge will help us to continue to do so. We take a lot of care in packing our plants and send them on the fastest possible service, so that you get them in the best possible condition. We will not compromise on that, sadly this does result in a cost penalty.
There is a similar issue with small orders of potted plants; these cost us a minimum of £9.90 to send on a fragile APC service. Royal Mail have amply demonstrated that they are incapable of handling fragile items without destroying them, so once again this is unsustainable on very small orders.
So, the minimum order charge of £15.00 will be applied and there is now a two tier postage charge as follows:
£5.90 for orders containing just bare root plants, and/or dry goods and empty baskets of 2.5 litres or less.
For all orders containing any potted plants and/or any baskets of 3 litres and over, the postage charge will be £9.90.
We are still likely to suffer a small loss on postage on many orders, but at least overall we should find the new system fairer and sustainable for all. This has been a difficult decision and I would welcome any suggestions.