‘I remember closing a 675,000-dollar Valentine’s Day deal with a wholesaler’

    Piet van Kampen actually wanted to be a PE teacher, but happened to get a job in the flower industry in 1973. After a year in Paris, he spent more than 23 years working for Zurel, followed by 23 years with DGI. After 47 years in the flower trade, he thinks it’s been enough. ”I think I’ve seen it all now and I’m turning 66; time to pass on the baton.”

    ”What are you going to do next?

    “I was one of the co-founders of Floral Fundamentals in 2014. The objective of this digital magazine is to connect growers, florists and traders. My role within Floral Fundamentals won’t change. I also collaborate with around 20 other international flower magazines. And I’ll still be involved with Cohim in China as an advisor and ambassador. Cohim is the largest training centre for florists in China. Apart from that, I’ll see if anything else comes up. I’m open to new opportunities, but don’t want to feel obliged.

    ”What was the best time for the flower industry?

    “I think between 1975 and 1992; the trade wasn’t as fragmented as now, remote buying didn’t exist yet, and prices were good. I remember closing a 675,000-dollar Valentine’s Day deal with a wholesaler, how Zurel had its own cargo plane for shipments to the USA for a while, how we were making a profit on the exchange rates, insurance agents were still ignorant, and the airlines’ kickback schemes were the icing on the cake.” (..)

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