‘We’ve got a thriving floriculture sector’

We’re more than halfway through the year and lots of things have happened. So far, Veiling Holambra’s turnover is showing a 15% increase. It would be great if the cooperative could maintain that figure for the rest of the year.

The Brazilian gross domestic product (GDP) has gone up by 1%. A poor result after many years of financial crisis; the real value is basically the same as in 2010. A nine-year standstill. Compared to that, the Brazilian cooperatives are doing extremely well! Agricultural cooperatives have also grown by 15% per year on average. I’m referring to the cooperatives in coffee, grains, etc. here.

Our own cooperative is currently working hard on the cold chain. Internally, we’re making some changes to our cut-flower distribution process. We’re going to enclose the distribution area and keep it at maximum 15 degrees. Roses will be placed directly from the cold store into the distribution area and from there on directly into the customer’s cold storage facilities. Growers supply their cut flowers cold, and customers are also asked to use refrigerated transport for the flowers.

We invested heavily in commercial buildings, including a new building for the delivery and supply of logistics resources. If everything goes according to plan, we’ll receive the latest bucket washer from Limex, based in the Dutch town of Panningen, next week. This great company will send a service team to install the machine, and after that, we’ll be the first company in Brazil with a Limex bucket washer!

I recently visited the FlowerTrials in the Netherlands. Many of the breeders are directly or indirectly involved in activities in the Holambra region. I was impressed with how professional this event has become. What stood out the most? The fact that many companies were concerned about labour costs and availability. I also noticed that, even if people were still worried about low phalaenopsis prices, some interesting plans were discussed, including better and clearer positioning of the different types and forms of phalaenopsis. Breeders are playing an active role in this.

The assortment on show was magnificent and there are still many more opportunities for product broadening and innovation! Unfortunately, Brazilian import procedures for new products still cost a lot of time and money. Hopefully, this will change soon. I understood that for certain products, we can import seed, but no tissue-culture cuttings. While the latter are in fact cleaner. Who can make sense of that?

Doing business in Brazil isn’t always easy. The Brazilians say their country is the country of the future, and they jokingly add that it will always be the country of the future. Having said that, we’ve got a thriving floriculture sector. I am convinced that good entrepreneurs, who don’t give up easily, can be successful here.

From 26 until 28 June, the Hortitec fair will be held in Holambra for the 26th time. As always, it’s fully booked. I’m sure it will attract many well-known Dutch and other international companies again. There’s always a great atmosphere, and it’s also an opportunity to welcome visitors to our cooperative. I’m looking forward to it!

André van Kruijssen,

General manager Veiling Holambra, Brazil


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