‘I was deeply affected by the theft’

The recent theft of a large sum of money has had a big impact on all of us. The incident has left both members and employees of Royal FloraHolland completely shocked. Which is understandable. As a cooperative, it is our responsibility and obligation to manage our members’ money carefully and securely. It was even more dramatic for employees, when they heard that the money had been stolen by a colleague. These things can really break your trust in others.

You’ll understand that I was also deeply affected by it myself. Royal FloraHolland is an organisation with complex systems. In my role as CEO, and before this, as CFO, I am constantly looking for the right balance between safety and security on one hand and efficiency and workability on the other hand. When I was CFO, I initiated a compliance programme and set up an internal audit department. Some of the measures we were talking about at that time will now be implemented with priority.

We also need stricter rules in other areas. The new access system in Naaldwijk might be perceived as unwelcoming by some visitors. However, it is necessary to do this. Our marketplace has a very open character. Growers, buyers and other users can freely access our premises. Unfortunately, these privileges are abused sometimes. Carts and trolleys aren’t always safe. That’s something we must all be aware of. In the common interest of all users. A stolen cart will be missed at some stage.

All our marketplace users are entitled to a safe working environment. That includes treating each other with respect. In the way we behave and in the way we speak. That applies to our employees, as well as to our customers. It is completely unacceptable to see drink-drivers on a tractor, or tractor drivers allowing a dog to ride along, and that they are upset when you remind them of the rules. There’s a reason why our employees must wear safety boots and high-vis vests. It’s compulsory for everyone on the distribution floor. Safety is of great importance, so let’s all work on it together!

Steven van Schilfgaarde,

CEO Royal FloraHolland

Here you can read more blogs from Steven van Schilfgaarde

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