“It’s easy for Dutch companies to do business in Holambra, because they read Het Vakblad voor de Bloemisterij here!” I used to hear this statement quite regularly, until a few years ago. It implied that you could get by with Dutch here at the time. Very convenient for Dutch sales representatives who came over, and also handy for all communications, including emails and WhatsApp messages.
I no longer hear anyone say it these days, for two important reasons.
The first reason has to do with the lousy postal services in Brazil. A few years ago, I’d receive Het Vakblad from our chairman Joost van Oene. He’s got a subscription, so when he was finished with his copy, he’d leave it on my desk. The past two years, the periods in between just got longer and longer, until I’d receive a small pile of editions every now and again.
The postal services started to get worse. And at the moment, I haven’t seen a copy of the trade journal for six months. It just doesn’t get delivered at all! And my guess is that the publisher of Het Vakblad isn’t exactly making a profit on sending the trade journal to the other side of the world.
The second reason is the arrival of the next generation young growers. Many children have joined their parents in the family business and are now fulfilling important roles. These young people still understand a little Dutch, but most of them find it hard to read or speak the language. They prefer communicating in English or Portuguese. Het Vakblad voor de Bloemisterij has become something they associate with their parents.
Does that mean that there’s no longer a market here for the trade journal? Our floricultural industry is growing like never before and there’s a huge need for information! Brazil doesn’t have a trade journal for the floricultural industry. Agricultural trade journals feature articles about the cultivation of potatoes, sugar cane, citrus fruits and coffee.
There’s a real need for a digital, English language edition of Het Vakblad voor de Bloemisterij! Make it available with a personal code for around €10.00 per month. Not a weekly edition, but daily news, high-quality pictures and videos, and some feature stories. I’d say you could get at least 150 subscriptions here straightaway and my guess is that the same is true for many other countries! There’s a revenue model waiting to be developed!
I hope the opportunity won’t be missed. Otherwise, Het Vakblad voor de Bloemisterij will soon become no more than a thing from the past over here…
André van Kruijssen,
General manager Veiling Holambra