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Flower Power

From Chanel camelias to Louis Vuitton cherry blossoms, flowers commonly adorn luxury goods -- real or fake.

But sometimes it's the authenticity of flowers themselves that is at issue.  Japan imports millions of carnations from China each year, with demand rising dramatically just prior to Mother's Day.  This year Japanese Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries Minister Shoichi Nakagawa announced an inquiry into whether Chinese flower growers are cultivating and shipping proprietary varieties of carnation without obtaining permission from their owners.

So if you forgot to send Mum flowers, you may have a ready-made excuse.