“Happy birthday… to FloraHolland…”
Aug. 8, 2011, Aalsmeer, the Netherlands – The FloraHolland flower auction is celebrating its centennial this year.
Aug. 8, 2011, Aalsmeer, the Netherlands – The FloraHolland flower auction is celebrating its centennial this year. With the motto of 100 Years’ Color, the jubilee will be marked this fall at FloraHolland’s marketplaces in Aalsmeer, Bleiswijk, Eelde, Naaldwijk and Rijnsburg.
A century ago, growers agreed to organize the first local flower auction over a game of billiards in a pub. Now 100 years later, FloraHolland is a still growing, internationally active auction company. Each day, the co-operative has 8,000 Dutch and foreign growers delivering flowers and plants, and 2,500 buyers purchasing their products. The auction has a turnover of 4.1 billion euros and sells more than 12 billion flowers and plants a year, making it a significant contributor to the Dutch economy.
FloraHolland has well over 4,000 employees. Of its 8,000 suppliers of flowers and plants, 5,000 are members of the co-operative. The aim of this nonprofit venture is to obtain the best possible prices for its members’ flowers and plants, for the lowest possible operating costs.
The first generation of mechanical auction clocks bears little resemblance to today’s virtual clocks (see photos). Yet their purpose and operation remain unchanged: to bring together supply and demand for flowers and plants each day in a focused and transparent manner, in order to attract the best market prices.