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In Memoriam: Adrie Vijverberg
After growing up in the Netherlands in a family from Naaldwijk, Adrie went to work in greenhouse construction at an early age. First in a family business, later he worked for Dutch greenhouse builder Dalsem for a long time: Adrie was the man to build many greenhouse projects for them all over the world.
In a later stage, Adrie was mostly based in North America where he founded his own company, NedMex, and again he was hired non-stop as a supervisor to many builders of high tech greenhouses; he was often sent to project sites in the middle of nowhere. All on its own; realizing huge vegetable operations in the most remote areas of the world; Russia, Korea, Brazil, Japan; all with just the help of local work crews. Adrie enjoyed the work and the people, he easily adapted to their local habits and was able to communicate in any local language to complete the job.
Later, his son Joost joined him. "Together we traveled the entire world, building huge projects, always contracted by Dutch greenhouse builders," Joost said. "We did a lot of projects in Chile, Venuzuela and also in Mexico."
"Working together with my father was the best thing there was," Joost recalls. "We always enjoyed it, and the projects we did were huge; always 20 or 40 hectares, one phase after another. Always together, it was the best."
Also Joost and his wife Julie founded their own company in the U.S.: G&V Construction. Still he continued to work a lot with his father. "We did many projects in Mexico later, I think it was these projects that my father enjoyed the most. Building large modern greenhouse complexes from 40 hectares or more; we even realized a project of 80 hectares for Bionatur in Toluca; again for Dalsem. As well as this we did large projects near Cancun, again phases of 40 hectares."
Always on the job
Joost remembers his father as a person that was living for greenhouse construction. "He was a family man, but when he was working on a project, the deadline of the greenhouse came first. To him, the completion of a project in time was the most important thing there was."
It was Mexico where Adrie eventually started a new life 16 years ago. He lived in Guadalajara together with his new wife and their three new sons. "I learned the job from my father, he taught me all the tricks of the trade. It's too bad that my dad's little boys in Mexico never had the chance to learn this as well," said Joost.
As Adrie Vijverberg was mostly working on high tech Dutch greenhouse projects, his business slowed down a bit due to the crisis. "The dollar was low and the euro too strong. Later this changed. Luckily the Dutch started exporting again," said Joost.
Recently Adrie was working in Kazakhstan, supervising a project for Van der Hoeven. After three months of non-stop work, he came back to Mexico late November to see his family for a few weeks.
Back at home, Adrie suddenly did not feel well. He died from a stroke on 25 November at the age of 61.
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