‘Tomorrow’s challenges might be bigger than we think’

Royal FloraHolland was frequently mentioned in the news during the past few weeks and I was quoted in many of those articles.  I’ve been getting lots of questions. But we mustn’t forget that the issues that are discussed right now concern the entire sector.

Something which was clearly illustrated in the most recent Rabobank report, published last week, as well. We’re all working together to make the changes that are needed in response to the major trends, both within and outside the sector. We’re doing this enthusiastically and rapidly so that, as the Dutch floricultural industry, we don’t miss the boat. In the interest of our growers and our buyers.

Photo Royal FloraHolland

It seemed that in some cases, we were going too fast though. With Floriday, for example, and with 100% digital as well. We’ve taken on board the advice from our Members’ Council in this regard. Other stakeholders confirmed the signals during various information sessions. That’s why, partially thanks to the Members’ Council, we’ve decided to take more time to realise 100% digital.

We are always prepared to listen and learn how we can improve things. That applies to Floriday, to ideas about the auction clock in Rijnsburg, as well as certification for smaller growers. Everyone is welcome to think along. And that doesn’t require any media interviews or petitions. We won’t be able to accept every single idea or proposal.

We’ll always need to make choices, also regarding the order in which we address problems. The most important thing is that we continue to offer an infrastructure that allows different types of business models to flourish. With the cooperative principle in mind, I’m committed to the common interest. We must, and want to, respond to the rapidly changing markets and regulations on that basis.

In Brussels meanwhile, they’ve started to discuss measures with an eye to the climate-neutral economy. If all our growers are certified, it will be much easier for them to obtain a compulsory CO2 footprint passport. With a little help from Royal FloraHolland where needed. So, let’s look further than today. Tomorrow’s challenges might be bigger than we think.

Steven van Schilfgaarde,

CEO Royal FloraHolland

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