FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
OCTOBER 13, 2020
CONTACT: Amanda Bevis (202) 680-9262

Tallahassee, FL –The Florida Retail Federation urged consumers today to support Florida retail stores this week. Florida retailers are the backbone of Florida's economy, provide jobs for Florida families and support community organizations. 

Prime Days, which occur October 13 through 14, may offer online savings, but many Florida retail stores offer alternative savings opportunities that come with unmatched customer service.

"Florida's retail stores have faced unprecedented challenges this year during the COVID-19 pandemic," said Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. "But they've gone above and beyond to meet the demands of consumers and keep them safe and well with the latest CDC guidelines in place. We're asking consumers to return the effort by supporting local retail stores. Whether you're chasing a deal, prepping for a family gathering or checking off your Christmas list, choose to shop Florida retail."

Here are five tips from the Florida Retail Federation to help you shop local and support your community: 

  • Visit your local retailers' social media channel or website. Most local shops share upcoming sales with their followers online. To stay informed and up-to-date on promotions, consider joining their email list.
  • Eat local. Many grocery stores and farmers' markets offer produce and goods locally grown in your region. Purchasing local produce means fresher, higher-quality goods that are sustainably grown and sold.
  • Research alternative promotions. During Prime Days, many businesses will offer overlapping sales events. Do your homework and see what local stores have the best offer for your needs.
  • Dine out (or in) this week. Many times local restaurants will offer special weeknight deals or "Happy Hour" menus to help you save. Seek out dining establishments that also support locally-owned farms.
  • Remember community impact matters. Your dollars make a difference in your community. When you shop locally, you are helping those closest to you prosper while investing in your local economy.

COVID-19 has impacted small businesses and retailers in Florida's communities and throughout the nation. As Florida's retailers continue to overcome the challenges of the pandemic, local support matters now more than ever. 

ABOUT THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SEPTEMBER 23, 2020
CONTACT:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., (202) 680-9262


Monthly Retail Imports, January 2019 to December 2020

Tallahassee, FL – As Florida and the rest of the United States continue to reopen, the Florida Retail Federation announced that retailers nationwide have set a new record of imports in preparation for the holiday season, according to a  report released on September 9. 

According to the data, U.S. ports handled 1.92 million Twenty-Foot Equivalent Units (TEU) in July, up 19.3 percent from June. A TEU is one 20-foot-long cargo container or its equivalent.

August was estimated at 2.06 million TEU, a 6 percent year-over-year increase. Actual August numbers won't be confirmed until next month, but if reported as estimated, it will beat the previous record of 2.04 million TEU set in October 2018.

"Florida retailers are relieved to be able to restock and replenish their inventory after reopening the state," said Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. "With the challenges we continue to face in 2020, Florida retailers are committed to making for a more joyful year's end for consumers during the holiday season. We want to support our customers during these challenging times and safely provide a merrier season for them and their loved ones."

The forecast for September is set at 1.89 million TEU, up 1.1 percent year over year. The report forecasts about 7.58 million TEU during the July-October “peak season.” This timeline is when retailers prepare merchandise for the winter holiday. According to the data, this forecast could make 2020 the third-busiest peak season on record following 7.7 million TEU in 2018 and 7.66 million TEU last year.

The data shared by the Florida Retail Federation is informed by a monthly Global Port Tracker report released by the National Retail Federation.  The Global Port Tracker is produced for NRF by the consulting firm Hackett Associates, which provides historical data and forecasts for U.S. ports. 

For more information on the predictions of the National Retail Federation, visit:  https://nrf.com/media-center/press-releases/imports-spike-economy-continues-recovery-and-retailers-stock-holidays

ABOUT  THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

ABOUT THE NATIONAL RETAIL FEDERATION
NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private-sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs — 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SEPTEMBER 21, 2020
CONTACT: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., (202) 680-9262

Tallahassee, FL – Florida shoppers are enthusiastic about celebrating Halloween in a safe fashion this year, despite the pandemic, reports the Florida Retail Federation. In fact, according to a surveyconducted by the National Retail Federation, consumers are so focused on a memorable holiday that they plan to spend $92.12 on average this spooky season compared to $86.27 in 2019.

The survey reveals that three-quarters say the virus is impacting their celebration plans, with 17 percent planning to celebrate virtually. 

Still, 148 million U.S. adults plan to participate in the ghoulish festivities. Most of the top activities this year include safer-at-home plans, like decorating the home (53%), carving pumpkins (46%), dressing up in costumes (46%) and dressing up their pets (18%).

Florida retailers are here to provide all the scary decor and sweet treats for your Halloween celebrations to be as memorable as they are safe," says Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. "Unsurprisingly, consumers are looking to make the most of every holiday during this unusual year. Florida retailers are prepared to meet the increased demand for candy, decor, costumes and more to ensure a safe and spooky holiday for all." 

With the extra time spent at home, consumers are eager to begin shopping for the Halloween season, with four in 10 already searching for their ghoulish delights. Florida shoppers plan to visit discount stores, speciality Halloween shops, grocery stores and online retailers. About 30 percent of consumers plan to purchase their Halloween items online, up 5 percent compared to 2019. 

"Rest assured, Florida's stores are open and at the ready to help you stay safe and healthy while stocking up for the Halloween holiday," said Shalley. "For an added measure of precaution, many of Florida's retailers are offering purchase services to buy online to pick-up in store, receive curbside or have your products delivered to your door." 

As children eagerly await October 31st to dress up, the top staples remain consistent, including princesses and superheroes, most especially spiderman:

  • Princess - 2.7 million
  • Spiderman - 1.8 million
  • Superhero - 1.6 million
  • Ghost - 1.3 million
  • Batman - 1.3 million

Those who plan on dressing up their furry friends may have a pet pumpkin this Halloween, as the orange squash remains to be the hottest costume for animals. The top favorites include: 

  • Pumpkin - 10 percent
  • Hot Dog - 6 percent
  • Superhero - 5 percent
  • Cat - 3 percent

For more information on the predictions of the National Retail Federation, visit: https://nrf.com/media-center/press-releases/consumers-anticipate-new-ways-celebrate-halloween-despite-covid-19

ABOUT THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

ABOUT THE NATIONAL RETAIL FEDERATION
NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private-sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs — 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.  

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Tuesday, 04 August 2020 12:23 Written by

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
AUGUST 3, 2020
CONTACT: Amanda Bevis (202) 680-9262

Florida Retailers Offer Safe Ways to Save Money During Back-to-School Tax Holiday

Tallahassee, FL – Florida retail stores are preparing to safely help families save money while shopping for school supplies during the state’s Back to School Sales Tax Holiday Friday, Aug. 7 through Aug. 9. “Florida retailers stand ready to help families meet their school supply needs this year,” said Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. “Whether children are learning from home or heading back to school this fall, families can safely shop and save money over the tax-free weekend.”

    The following items are available for purchase tax-free Aug. 7-9:
  • Masks, clothing, footwear and backpacks costing $60 or less;
  • School supplies costing $15 or less; and
  • First $1,000 of the sales tax price of personal computers or personal computer-related accessories.

According to a survey conducted by the National Retail Federation, Florida consumers plan to spend a record amount to properly prepare students for school this year. Families with children in elementary school through high school anticipate spending an average $789.49 per family, topping the previous year’s record of $696.70.

About 63 percent of K-12 families expect to buy computers and other electronics this year, up from 54 percent last year, spending at an average $274.44, up from $203.44 last year. College students also anticipate investing in new computers as 60 percent plan to buy electronics, up from 53 percent last year, and they expect to spend more at an average $261.52, up from $234.69.

There are more than 270,000 retail stores in Florida, and one in five jobs is tied to Florida retail. To ensure customers can safely shop, there are three ways you can purchase tax-free supplies from Florida retailers.

  • Visit: Visit your local retailer to shop all the options available.
  • Online: Find your favorite Florida retailer online to select what you need.
  • Curbside or Delivery: Call your local retailer to place an order for curbside pick-up or delivery, where available.

Many stores are taking safety precautions, including social distancing and wearing masks, during the COVID-19 pandemic. Help protect others by following CDC guidelines and local laws.

Visit www.fldoe.org to learn more about what you need to prepare and help your children return to school safely. For a full list of eligible tax-free supplies, please visit FloridaRevenue.com/BacktoSchool.

This year’s Back to School Sales Tax Holiday was established when Governor DeSantis signed HB 7097 into law on April 8. The legislation was championed by Budget Chairs Sen. Rob Bradley and Rep. Travis Cummings, and the tax-free holiday was a priority of Sen. Joe Gruters, Sen. Keith Perry, Sen. Kelli Stargel and Rep. Bryan Avila.

The forecast on spending this season is informed by a survey conducted by the National Retail Federation. For more information, visit: https://nrf.com/media-center/press-releases/coronavirus-could-push-back-school-spending-record-level-uncertain.

ABOUT THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

ABOUT THE NATIONAL RETAIL FEDERATION
NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private-sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs — 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.

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