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I regularly experience a lack of knowledge about the fantastic sector in which I work; people are often still unfamiliar with Horticulture.

Tribute to the grower

Author: Harm Custers – Head of Marketing at Takii Europe B.V.

I regularly experience a lack of knowledge about the fantastic sector in which I work; people are often still unfamiliar with Horticulture. Herewith my contribution to put horticulture and our heroes (Growers!) into the spotlight.

Growers (cultivators) grow crops and produce food or flowers and plants for people. Doing so, they contribute to a healthier and more beautiful world. Growers might still use clogs (or boots) or have dirty hands, but above all, they are pure entrepreneurs. Growers that invest several million Euros in their business are no exception nowadays.

The majority of Growers run a family business. The family owns the company but often works with a management structure and with dedicated employees. Running a business means taking risks and working hard to gain income. Being a good entrepreneur requires courage, vision and much passion. Being an outstanding Grower requires craftsmanship (“green fingers”) and technology. Not a day is the same: growing results depend on environmental influences and the way a grower respond to this. All this continues to add a romantic touch to the art of growing.

Whether cultivation takes place in the open ground (arable horticulture) or greenhouses (greenhouse horticulture), today’s Growers are continually working to improve their techniques and methods. They grow intensively and therefore use production resources very effectively. Mechanization, robotization and artificial intelligence are now fully applied. Greenhouse horticulture uses geothermal heat, recycled CO2 and recirculates irrigation water. Most greenhouses today are a complex ecosystem in which pests and diseases are often controlled biologically. The newest greenhouses do not use energy; they produce energy. Ecologically all very responsible.

I am proud of our innovative and hard-working Growers! I am proud of their great passion, which is equivalent to their striving, enthusiasm and the desire to do what is necessary to make high-quality products for all of us, day in day out. It is these Growers that the world needs and that continue to provide us with healthy food and beautiful plants and flowers.

My late father was a Grower too. I recently came across a quote that typifies him (and Growers in general) well. “Always do your best. What you plant now, you will harvest later.

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