Renate Koppen from Kwekerij Groenhof is in the FPC Flowering Plants. She has noticed that growers often keep their cards close to their chests. However, you can let your voice be heard via the FPC.

We highlight Royal FloraHolland members in a series of portraits. Entrepreneurs, thinkers and innovators who enter into conversation with each other and the Royal FloraHolland management About the issues we are facing as a cooperative. Special people with their own ideas and a collective dream: a flourishing future for our cooperative.

Renate van Koppen (47)

  • Kwekerij Groenhof
  • Hibiscus
  • Westland region
  • Married, two daughters

"We're not such a large nursery ourselves. That makes it even more interesting and instructive for me to be involved in the cooperative. That's why I decided to join the FPC Flowering Plants five years ago. In that way, I can keep abreast of what's going on at Royal FloraHolland and among fellow growers. I think that's important. To escape my little bubble for a while, and to keep up to date with the market, product and colleagues."

Growers often keep their cards close to their chests

The FPC sometimes receives a question from the cooperative. For example, whether we want to assess the state of play regarding certification among our members. I will then enter into discussion with my colleagues: how do you feel about it? How could you improve and what issues are you coming up against? But that shouldn't be seen as a sales pitch from the cooperative. I genuinely want to know what's going on. So that we can relay this information back to Royal FloraHolland for future policy. I have noticed that growers often play their cards close to their chests. And I do understand why. However, you can let your voice be heard via the FPC."

Sustainability is a topic that appeals to me. I studied in Wageningen - that turns you into somewhat of a biologist. First and foremost, I want to grow a great product. How can I do that in the most environmentally-friendly way? I also enjoy it if I can get colleagues to think about sustainability. What sort of entrepreneur would I like to be? And then letting them get to work on that. Certification is not self-evident to all growers. It may be too expensive, for example, or too complicated. I'm happy to take a look at it with them then; how can it be achieved? The FPC offers the opportunities to do this. We can tell Royal FloraHolland that certain things aren't working. And what we think could be a possible solution. For example: working with multiple suppliers. Before the coronavirus, FPC meetings always took place at the company of one of the growers. I find it fascinating to see how other people run their business. One meeting could be held in a hip canteen, another could be held around a kitchen table. That beautifully illustrates to me just how varied our cooperative really is. And how much we have to offer to one another and the world around us."

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