At last: we will get our own auction clock! It can’t possibly be that some beer magnate who also wants to sell a few trolleys through the auction clock every now and again, is going to determine what’s needed to strengthen the clock. What’s needed to strengthen the clock has already been agreed by loyal suppliers via FPC rose, in collaboration with the auctioneers.
You’d think that with their clear advice, starting a new trajectory is easy as pie? Not at Royal FloraHolland, it turns out. The auction calls for innovation, but at the end of the day, they want everything to stay the same while they increase the fees. We call that: putting the cart before the horse.
With a stronger clock, I believe that supply and demand can increase 5 to 10 percent per year. Because it would force many growers to choose, and where would we all be without the auction clock? Just think of the many growers that use the clock as a price guide for their direct trade. Where would they be then? The truth is, it would leave them with no choice but to become a loyal supplier themselves. Something the trade would benefit from, too.
There’s only one place to sell flowers: THE AUCTION CLOCK. That’s where supply and demand come together. Just like in the past, during the prosperous years. We can go back to that. It requires some strict rules, but that’s something the FPC will be able to handle, with their plenitude of practical experience. Policies shouldn’t be made in the towers of some head office.
By now, everybody knows that Connect is the clock’s biggest enemy. Connect and the clock simply don’t go together. It’s got to be one or the other. Time to make a choice.
It wasn’t too long ago when, if we disagreed with the auction’s policies, we’d get out onto the work floor and start throwing trolleys around. If a grower didn’t play according to the rules, he’d soon have his trolley knocked over. That’s how it went, and the trolley throwers were heard as well.
It’s a bit harder these days, as the trolleys are all placed right next to each other. So, we’ll have to come up with something else. Very simple: one clock for the loyal suppliers and one for those who want to make use of it every now and again. I think that within a week, all problems will be solved, and everyone will be happy with the outcomes.
It will be good for the trade and for the buyers, and that’s what it’s all about: easier, better and more transparent, without any surprises. And if it leads to better prices on top of that, we’ll all benefit from it!
Simon van der Burg,
Rose grower Timaflor, Kenya