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Almost a third of greenhouse gardening companies in the Netherlands can no longer pay the bills or have problems with them in the short term. This was stated by the sector organization Greenhouse Horticulture Netherlands. The cause of the problems is the high prices of gas and electricity.
“It’s the first warning stage,” says Jaco Voigs. broadcast west. He is Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Westland District of Greenhouse Horticulture Netherlands. “If the government doesn’t step in now, there will be no revenue model for growing plants, flowers, vegetables and fruits.”
The Trade Union earlier warned of the consequences of higher energy prices. For example, it was announced last week that plant grower Plantes, the largest plant grower in the Netherlands by sales volume, is partly due to higher energy prices next April. closes its doors. About two hundred permanent employees and two hundred flex workers in the greenhouse horticulture company Then they lose their jobs.
Width may be lower
A survey conducted by the trade union among the members showed that three-quarters of the respondents had adapted to their cultivation due to payment problems.
As a result, it is likely that fewer vegetables, fruits, flowers and plants will be put on the market in the coming period, according to a trade association report. The supply may also decrease over time.
Vooijs explains: “For winter, the decision will be made to sow cold with crops that can do this. Also, less planting or an extension of the changing season will also be decided.”
Cold farming is done in Boskoop, for example. The problems caused by high energy prices for horticultural companies do not appear in the region’s greenhouses, the spokesperson said. “Businessmen here use gas at most to keep the greenhouses frost-free. It can’t be compared to energy-intensive agriculture like tomatoes and potted plants.”
According to the spokesperson, Boskoop entrepreneurs are experiencing rising inflation and changing buying behavior of consumers
Orchid farmers were the most affected
According to Greenhouse Horticulture Netherlands, orchid farmers are the hardest hit by high energy prices. A quarter of production has now been forced to stop.
“The orchid that’s being sold now has a lifespan of about two years. It’s a plant that needs heating, but heating is no longer affordable because of the high gas bill,” Voigs says. “If you pull the plug now, the one-year-old plants won’t make it.”
Many of these farmers also expect job losses. “When a company is on pause, it will want to keep the permanent employees, but not the temporary employees,” Voigs says.
If the government does not step in or provide support, eight percent of respondents expect bankruptcy this year. Greenhouse Horticulture Netherlands notes that neighboring countries are now meeting their regulators with “very strong” compensation measures. “Given its position in Europe, the Netherlands cannot be left behind in this regard.”
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