Dutch Flower and Plant Exports Decline in 2023, Presenting Industry Challenges

by Anna

The Dutch flower and plant export industry concluded 2023 with a notable 4% reduction, totaling 6.8 billion euros, as reported by the Association of Wholesalers in Floriculture Products (VGB) based on export statistics from Floridata.

The export value of cut flowers witnessed a 5% decrease, amounting to 4.2 billion euros, while plants experienced a more moderate decline of 3%, totaling 2.6 billion euros. “After two years of decrease, we face significant challenges this year, both closer to home and abroad,” expressed Matthijs Mesken, director of the VGB.

Varied Impact on Export Destinations

The export values to Germany and Italy experienced a slight decrease, while the United Kingdom and France encountered more substantial declines – 7% and 10%, respectively. Poland and Belgium stood out as positive trends within the top ten list, suggesting further diversification outside this bracket.

European Elections and Brexit Uncertainties

The upcoming European elections and the formation of the new Dutch cabinet bring uncertainties to the business climate in the coming period. With almost all European countries heading to the polls this year, including the election of a new European Parliament, the results could potentially lead to significant instability.

Regarding Brexit, Mesken noted, “Unfortunately, we are not yet done with the Brexit issue, as new phytosanitary requirements for cut flowers are to follow.” The industry also faces concerns due to instability in supply countries like Israel and Ecuador.

Positive Stories Amid Challenges

Despite the challenges, Mesken highlights positive stories within the industry. Consumers continue to show a willingness to buy the beautiful flowers and plants from the region. Mesken emphasizes the crucial role of sectoral communication in showcasing how the ornamental horticulture sector is actively working on sustainability.

For more detailed information on the annual figures for 2023 and the latest developments in the top 10 export countries, interested parties can refer to FloraFlits. Both Matthijs Mesken and Wesley van den Berg, manager at Floridata, provide insights and explanations in the publication.

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