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Top 11 Florist Certifications

This article provides an overview of the top certifications for florists, including requirements and benefits.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 17 min read

Certifications are important for florists in the job market because they demonstrate a florist's knowledge and skill level. Certification provides proof of specialized training and expertise, which can help a florist stand out from other applicants. A certification will also show potential employers that the florist is committed to their profession and has taken the time to improve their skills. Additionally, certifications may be required by certain businesses or organizations, making it essential for florists looking to work in those areas.

This article reviews the top certifications for Florists and explains how they can help to enhance a florist's career.

What are Florist Certifications?

Florist certification is a program offered by a variety of organizations that allows professional florists to demonstrate their knowledge and experience in the field. Certification can be obtained through a combination of education, work experience, or other qualifications. By becoming certified, florists are able to demonstrate their expertise to potential customers and employers, as well as build upon their existing skillset.

Certified florists have the opportunity to gain access to exclusive resources and discounts from vendors and suppliers. They also receive recognition for their achievements, which can help them stand out in the competitive floral industry. Additionally, certification provides an opportunity for professional development and growth, allowing florists to stay informed on new trends and techniques in the industry. Overall, florist certification can help improve customer service, increase sales opportunities, and enhance overall business success.

Pro Tip: When seeking florist certification, look for a program that offers hands-on training and experience. This will ensure that you have the skills and knowledge necessary to become a successful florist. Also, be sure to research any certifying body to make sure it is reputable and recognized in the industry.

Related: What does a Florist do?

Top 11 Florist Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Florists today.

1. American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD)

The American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD) is a professional organization for floral designers. It was founded in 1965 and is the only floral design organization accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). AIFD provides educational programs, networking opportunities, and other resources to its members.

To become an AIFD member, applicants must first complete an approved course of study in floral design, or have at least five years of experience as a professional floral designer. Once the application has been submitted, they must pass a written exam and submit a portfolio of work. The portfolio should include at least three designs that demonstrate their knowledge and skill level in floral design. After passing the exam and submitting their portfolio, applicants must complete an interview with an AIFD panel to assess their skills and knowledge.

The cost of becoming an AIFD member varies depending on the type of membership chosen. There are three types of memberships: Professional Membership ($200), Associate Membership ($100), and Student Membership ($50). All memberships require annual dues to remain active.

In total, it can take several months to become an AIFD member due to the application process, exam preparation, portfolio submission, and interview process.

2. Certified Floral Designer (CFD)

Certified Floral Designer (CFD) is a professional certification program offered by the American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD). It is designed to recognize and promote excellence in the field of floral design. The CFD program provides an opportunity for floral designers to demonstrate their knowledge, skills, and abilities in the art of floral design.

The CFD program consists of three parts: a written exam, a practical exam, and an oral interview. The written exam tests knowledge of floral design principles and techniques, as well as plant material identification. The practical exam requires candidates to create two designs based on given themes or specifications. Finally, the oral interview evaluates interpersonal communication skills and customer service techniques.

To become certified as a CFD, applicants must pass all three parts of the program with a score of 70% or higher. The entire process typically takes about six months from start to finish.

The cost for the CFD program varies depending on several factors such as location and type of membership chosen. Generally speaking, the cost ranges from $250-$400 USD for non-members, and $150-$200 USD for AIFD members.

3. Certified Professional Florist (CPF)

Certified Professional Florist (CPF) is a professional certification program offered by the American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD). The CPF program is designed to recognize and reward floral professionals who demonstrate an advanced level of knowledge, skill, and experience in the floral industry.

The CPF certification process consists of three components: written examination, practical demonstration, and a portfolio review. To become certified, applicants must first pass a written exam which covers topics such as flower identification, design principles, customer service, business management and more. After passing the written exam, applicants must then complete a practical demonstration where they will be tested on their ability to create floral designs using fresh flowers. Finally, applicants must submit a portfolio review which includes photographs of their work and letters of recommendation from other professionals in the industry.

The entire process typically takes about 6-12 months from start to finish. Applicants should plan to spend at least 10 hours per week studying for the written exam and practicing their skills for the practical demonstration. The cost of the program varies depending on whether you are an AIFD member or non-member; however it generally ranges between $400-$600 USD.

4. European Master Florist (EMF)

European Master Florist (EMF) is an internationally recognized qualification for professional florists. It is a certification that demonstrates a high level of knowledge, skill and experience in the field of floristry. The EMF certification is awarded by the European Floral Design Organisation (EFDO), which is an independent organization dedicated to promoting excellence in floral design and education.

The EMF qualification requires applicants to have at least five years of experience in the floral industry and to have completed a minimum of 500 hours of formal training. Applicants must also pass a written exam and submit a portfolio demonstrating their skills and knowledge.

The process of obtaining the EMF qualification can take up to two years, depending on the applicant's experience and training.

To get started, applicants must first register with EFD0 and pay an application fee. This fee covers the cost of processing applications, administering exams, and providing support throughout the qualification process. After registering, applicants will be assigned a mentor who will guide them through the process.

Once all requirements are met, applicants must pass a written exam before they can receive their EMF certificate. The cost for this exam varies depending on the country in which it is taken; however, it typically ranges from €100-€200 ($120-240).

In addition to these costs, applicants may incur additional expenses related to their training or travel for exams or presentations.

5. American Academy of Floriculture (AAF)

The American Academy of Floriculture (AAF) is a professional organization that provides certification and training to individuals in the floriculture industry. It was established in 1994 as a non-profit organization to provide education, support, and recognition for those who work in the field of floriculture.

To become certified by AAF, an individual must complete an approved course of study and pass an exam. The coursework typically takes about six months to complete. Courses are offered online or through local colleges and universities. After completing the coursework, applicants must take the AAF certification exam which covers topics such as plant identification, floral design, business management, and customer service.

The cost of AAF certification varies depending on the institution offering the courses. Generally speaking, it can range from $200 to $1000 or more depending on the length of the program and other factors such as materials fees or additional exams required for certification.

In addition to providing certifications, AAF also offers members access to resources such as job postings, industry news updates, networking opportunities with other professionals in the field, and discounts on products and services related to floriculture.

6. Society of American Florists (SAF)

The Society of American Florists (SAF) is a professional organization for florists and flower industry professionals. It was founded in 1884 and is the largest florist association in the United States. The mission of SAF is to promote the floral industry, provide education and resources for florists, and advocate for the rights of its members.

To become a member of SAF, you must fill out an application form and pay an annual membership fee. The cost of membership varies depending on your type of business, but typically ranges from $50 to $350 per year. After submitting your application and payment, it takes approximately two weeks to receive your membership card.

Membership benefits include access to exclusive discounts on products and services, educational resources such as webinars and seminars, networking opportunities with other florists, access to marketing materials, free subscriptions to trade magazines, discounts on conferences and events, legal advice from attorneys specializing in floral law, access to research reports and data about the floral industry, recognition programs for outstanding members or businesses, job postings for florists looking for work or employers looking for employees, access to discounted insurance plans tailored specifically for florists’ needs, and more.

Overall, joining SAF can be a great way for experienced florists or those just starting out in the business to gain knowledge about their craft as well as take advantage of numerous other benefits that come with being part of this prestigious organization.

7. National Association of Flower Arrangement Societies (NAFAS)

The National Association of Flower Arrangement Societies (NAFAS) is a UK-based charity that promotes the art of flower arranging and horticulture. It was founded in 1961 and has over 3,000 members across the UK.

NAFAS offers a range of courses, competitions, events and activities for its members. It also provides support to local societies and clubs by offering advice on flower arranging techniques, organising workshops and providing resources such as books, magazines and videos.

To become a member of NAFAS, you must first join one of its local societies or clubs. Once you have done this, you can then apply to become a full member of NAFAS itself. This usually takes around 4-6 weeks to process your application.

The cost of joining NAFAS depends on the type of membership you choose - there are three different types available: Full Member (£25 per year), Associate Member (£15 per year) or Junior Member (free). All members receive access to exclusive benefits including discounts on products and services related to flower arranging.

8. American Horticultural Therapy Association (AHTA)

The American Horticultural Therapy Association (AHTA) is a professional organization that promotes the use of horticulture as a therapeutic activity. It was founded in 1979 and has since grown to become an international leader in the field of horticultural therapy. AHTA is dedicated to advancing the practice of horticultural therapy through education, research, and advocacy.

AHTA provides professional certification for those interested in becoming a certified horticultural therapist. The certification process requires completion of an accredited program, passing an exam, and completing continuing education requirements. Depending on the program chosen, it can take anywhere from 6 months to 2 years to complete the certification process.

To get started with AHTA certification, individuals must first find an accredited program that meets their needs. Accredited programs are offered by universities, colleges, community colleges, and other organizations across the United States and Canada. After selecting a program, students must complete all required coursework and pass an exam administered by AHTA before they can be certified as a horticultural therapist.

The cost of AHTA certification varies depending on the program chosen; however, most programs range from $1,000-$2,500 USD for tuition and fees. Additionally, there may be additional costs associated with books or materials needed for the coursework.

9. International Floral Design Association (IFDA)

The International Floral Design Association (IFDA) is a professional organization that provides education and certification for floral designers. It was founded in 1987 to promote the art and science of floral design and to provide members with the resources they need to become successful professionals. The IFDA offers a range of courses, workshops, and certifications in floral design.

It takes approximately 6-12 months to complete the IFDA certification program. To get certified, you must first complete an online application form and pay a one-time fee of $50. After your application is approved, you will be required to take a series of classes and workshops offered by the IFDA. Upon completion of all classes and workshops, you will be eligible for certification.

The cost for IFDA certification varies depending on the type of course or workshop you choose to take. Most courses range from $100-$500 per session, while workshops can range from $50-$200 per session. Additionally, there may be additional fees for materials or supplies used during the class or workshop.

10. Professional Floral Communicators International (PFCI)

Professional Floral Communicators International (PFCI) is a professional organization that provides education and certification to floral designers. It was established in 1993 with the mission of promoting the highest level of professionalism and excellence in the floral industry. The organization offers three levels of certification: Certified Floral Designer (CFD), Master Floral Designer (MFD), and Senior Floral Designer (SFD).

To become certified, applicants must complete an application process which includes submitting a portfolio of work and taking written exams. The CFD exam consists of two parts: theory and design. The MFD exam consists of three parts: theory, design, and business. The SFD exam consists of four parts: theory, design, business, and advanced design.

The cost to become certified varies depending on the level of certification sought. For example, the cost for the CFD exam is $150 USD; the cost for the MFD exam is $200 USD; and the cost for the SFD exam is $250 USD. Additionally, there is an annual membership fee which ranges from $50-$100 USD depending on your level of certification.

In total, it takes about 3-4 months to become certified by PFCI after submitting your application package. After submitting your application package you will receive an email confirming receipt within 2 weeks. Once accepted into the program you will be assigned a mentor who will help guide you through the process as well as answer any questions you may have about becoming certified.

11. Canadian Institute of Floral Designers (CIFD).

The Canadian Institute of Floral Designers (CIFD) is a professional organization dedicated to the advancement of floral design and education in Canada. It is the only nationally recognized certification program for florists in Canada, and it offers both online and classroom-based courses.

The CIFD certification program takes approximately six months to complete, depending on the individual’s schedule. To get certified, individuals must first complete an online course that covers topics such as flower care, design principles, business practices, and customer service. After completing the online course, individuals must take a written exam and then submit a portfolio of their work for review by an independent panel of judges.

The cost of the CIFD certification program varies depending on the type of course taken and whether or not additional materials are purchased. The basic cost for the online course is $395 CAD plus taxes. Additional fees may be required for textbooks or other materials associated with the program.

Overall, becoming certified by CIFD can provide florists with greater credibility in their field as well as access to exclusive resources such as networking opportunities and industry discounts.

Do You Really Need a Florist Certificate?

The answer to this question will depend on your individual situation. If you are interested in a career in floristry, then it is likely that you will need to obtain a Florist Certificate. This is because many employers look for applicants who have obtained a professional qualification in their chosen field. A Florist Certificate provides evidence of your knowledge and skills related to the floristry industry.

A Florist Certificate may also be required if you wish to become self-employed as a florist. Many cities and states have regulations that require those who operate businesses related to the sale of flowers or floral arrangements to have appropriate qualifications and certifications. A Florist Certificate can provide proof that you possess the necessary skills and knowledge needed to create quality arrangements and provide excellent customer service.

In addition, obtaining a Florist Certificate can help you stand out from other job applicants when applying for positions in the floristry industry. By having a certificate, it demonstrates that you take your career seriously, and that you are committed to staying up-to-date with news, trends, and techniques related to the profession.

Overall, whether or not you need a Florist Certificate will depend on your individual goals and circumstances. However, obtaining one can be beneficial in terms of employment prospects and providing proof of your expertise in the field of floristry.

Related: Florist Resume Examples

FAQs About Florist Certifications

1. What is a Florist Certification?

A Florist Certification is a qualification that demonstrates an individual has the knowledge and skills to work in the floral design industry. It is usually awarded by professional organizations or educational institutions after completing a course of study or passing an exam.

2. How do I get a Florist Certification?

You can obtain a Florist Certification by enrolling in an accredited program or taking an examination from a professional organization such as the American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD). You may also be able to find online courses that offer certification upon completion.

3. What are the benefits of having a Florist Certification?

Having a Florist Certification allows you to demonstrate your expertise and qualifications in the field, making you more competitive when applying for jobs or contracts. It can also help distinguish you from other florists without formal qualifications and may provide access to exclusive opportunities, such as scholarships or career advancement programs.

4. Is there an age limit for getting a Florist Certification?

No, there is no age limit for getting certified as a florist; however, most certification programs require applicants to be at least 18 years old.

5. How long does it take to get certified as a florist?

The length of time required to obtain certification depends on the type of program chosen, but typically ranges from six months to one year.