Dutch Flower Auctions


As most of you already know, Holland is by far the most famous country in the world if we talk about cut flowers and plants, but also bulbs. More than 60% of the complete world trade in flowers and plants takes place through flower auctions in Holland. So it is not strange that FloraHolland, established more than 100 years ago, is the biggest flower auction in the world. FloraHolland has several auctions spread across the country: Aalsmeer (the biggest), Rijnsburg, Naaldwijk and Eelde. Also auction Rhein-Maas (Herongen, Germany) belongs to FloraHolland and is a collaboration with Landgard. Every workday around 43 million flowers and 4.8 million plants from almost 50 countries are being sold on the flower auctions in Holland. This is almost 95% of the total sales in the country. To do this, the companies located on the auctions use 12 million flower buckets, 5.5 million plant trays and 800.000 flower boxes. In total around 650 flower and plant wholesale and exporter companies are located in Holland, mainly located at FloraHolland. The flowers will be exported all across the world. For Holland, the biggest export country is Germany, followed by the United Kingdom, Italy, France, Belgium and Russia. But the flowers will also reach the Baltic states, the United Arab Emirates, USA, China and a lot more. Popular flowers in Holland are roses and tulips. Mainly in Noord-Holland there are many tulip growers and that’s why it is also one of the national symbols. More than 80% of the flowers are being exported to other countries. The total amount of export was €5.2 billion in 2013. Wholesale and export companies buy their flowers and plants using the auction system called the clock. Invented in the 17th century to sell bulbs and became incredibly popular, but is starting to become very infamous these days. Growers from all over the country sell their flowers at the FloraHolland auction clocks. The price of flowers or plants at the clock is set high and the clock starts ticking down from 100. The price falls down when the clock is ticking. The person who makes the first bid gets the cart. When you buy the flowers too fast, you will probably overpay. But when you wait too long, you will go home empty handed without flowers and your boss will not be happy. So at the auction clocks, timing is everything. You can either leave the flower auction with beautiful flowers for a way too high price, just a good price or a very good, actually low price. A lot of companies also buy their flowers and plants straight from the grower without using FloraHolland, to make better price agreements, to arrange special packaging types and save costs. The biggest flower auction in the world has faced some tough years because of the economic and financial crisis, just like the growers, exporters, importers and wholesalers. There is a lot of international competition and some foreign companies, who used to buy flowers from Dutch flower export companies (mainly located at FloraHolland auctions), started buying their flowers straight from growers in developing countries like Kenya, Ethiopia, Colombia and Ecuador to save money. This is a serious threat for the Dutch floral industry and also for FloraHolland and already led to a lot of bankruptcies to Dutch flower exporters and growers. With their new mission FloraHolland aims to help her members with better margins and make sure there will be more people who buy more flowers and plants in 2020.

For more information, please visit: www.flowercompanies.com.


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