'It's scary owning a small business as cost of living soars'

Lesley Anne Baird from Stalks and Stems fears for her business as Scots tighten their belts due to rising costs.

A Glasgow florist has shared her fears for the future of small businesses as the cost of living soars.

Three-quarters of firms are set to raise prices in the next three months according to a new Chambers of Commerce survey – with a tenth of firms reporting recruitment difficulties.

Half of all businesses are also putting off investment over the next quarter, with retailers reporting the lowest levels of confidence since the beginning of the pandemic.

It comes as rocketing prices are set to hit Scots in the pocket even harder in the coming months with the government facing calls for action to help struggling families.

Glasgow florist Lesley Anne Baird, who runs Stalks and Stems, said it’s becoming “tougher and tougher” to have a business.

She told STV News: “It’s through the board, really. You’re seeing it in your energy costs, the cost of all your deliveries, it’s having a massive impact on the cost of things you want to come in. Some things we just can’t get.

“Even drivers are difficult to get at the moment. A lot of it is double or more. It’s a scary business.”

She added: “Because flowers are perishable, it doesn’t help. You can’t have it on your shelf looking pretty waiting for it to get bought. You have to buy keen and sell fast.

“Flowers are certainly a luxury item – that’s difficult. If people can only afford bread and milk or flowers, they’ll buy bread and milk. It’s definitely a worry for any business going ahead at the moment.”

Charandeep Singh, deputy chief of the Scottish Chamber of Commerce, said: “The cost burden on businesses at the moment – whilst they’re being exceptionally resilient through what has been a turbulent time over the last several years – they’re feeling the pinch now.

“Profits are being squeezed, investment is being frozen and prices are unfortunately having to increase for consumers.”

STV News is now on WhatsApp

Get all the latest news from around the country

Follow STV News
Follow STV News on WhatsApp

Scan the QR code on your mobile device for all the latest news from around the country

WhatsApp channel QR Code