How secure are your greenhouses? Have you ever had a break-in or been vandalize?
Dec. 17, 2009 – How secure are your greenhouses? Have you ever had a break-in or been vandalized.
What kind of crime prevention program do you have in place with respect to your property?
A Dec. 1, 2009 report in the Des Moines Register noted how "burglars forced their way into Iowa Orchids Inc., on the north side of Des Moines, for a second time late Sunday or early Monday…. Officers said 'very expensive lights' were taken in the break-in, along with a generator, climate control equipment, a security camera, and fertilizer. No arrests have been reported. Officers said it's the second burglary at the business in recent days."
Many years ago, at the start of my journalism career, I was called by police quite early one morning to return to our newspaper offices. It had been broken into and extensively vandalized. Typesetting equipment was smashed. Darkroom chemicals were splashed over walls and cupboards and drained on the floor. Filing cabinets were damaged, with folders strewn about and torn up. Yes, insurance covered most of the replacement and repair costs … but it took days to regain any semblance of order, and many weeks before things were back to normal.
During a greenhouse tour in the Netherlands a few years, our group viewed all manner of high tech equipment and processes. Quite amazing stuff. And then, at one of our final stops of the day, we were "introduced" to a pair of massive and menacing-looking dogs in one greenhouse, who were tied up in the shipping area. A person in our group asked the grower if they were pets. The grower shook his head, and chuckled, "no, they work here. At night they're not chained up."
It's important to review your crime prevention measures and protocols. And you don't have to do it alone. Most police departments have community officers who would be helpful in identifying changes that need to be made.
Are break-ins a big issue for growers? How often do you review your crime prevention measures? Have you been victimized, or do you know a grower who's been a crime victim?