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Dutch buy fewer flowers and plants than other Europeans

Each year, the Market & Information Department of Royal FloraHolland documents the consumption of flowers and plants in many countries. Recently, the Facts & Figures Report for the Netherlands was published. FloraHolland has collected a few interesting facts from it for you.

In Royal FloraHolland's view, there are four key countries: the UK, Germany, France and the Netherlands. One striking fact from the Netherlands report is that Dutch consumers spend the least on flowers of consumers from these four countries. Perhaps this is because the population there is greying faster and growing less than in the other countries.

Competition in the gift market

In the Netherlands, flowers and plants face a lot of competition from cosmetics and gift certificates as presents. The gift market is particularly important for cut flowers and less so for plants. The most popular cut flowers are the mixed bouquets. They share first place with a uniform bunch of roses. The familiarity, the image and the favourites among the cut flowers are explained in detail in the report.

Among plants, the green houseplants are the most popular ones. Around three-quarters of houseplants are bought for personal use; this proportion is about half for cut flowers.

Green declining

Sources in Royal FloraHolland and marketing research bureau GfK have noted a continuous annual decrease in the sales of plants at garden centres. The cause of this decline can be ascribed to the decrease in greenery in Dutch gardens. Newly built houses have smaller gardens. Existing gardens are tiled over or used as storage space. This means fewer purchases of garden plants.

There is still a growing demand for compact, ready-made and instantly effective garden solutions. The total garden market (including not-living materials) was €3.2 billion in 2014. This is an increase of 8% compared with 2013. Of this, €378 million consisted of garden plants, a drop of at least 12% compared with 2013. The most important reason for this change is the reduction in the number of articles sold.

Which sales channels are popular?

There is a lot of variety between purchasing channels. Florists are the market leaders in the sales of cut flowers. They also have the largest share in the number of purchases and in the total market revenue. Two of every three consumers buy from them regularly. But only 18% always (almost always) buys flowers at the florists.

Regarding the question of whether the internet provides serious competition for florists, the Consumer tracker of Royal FloraHolland has an answer. With 4%, the share of webshops for flowers and plants in the revenue for 2015 is almost the smallest of all sales channels. Florists stand at the top with 49%. In contrast, Dutch consumers spend the most per purchase through online ordering of flowers and/or plants.

There are around 3,300 florists in the Netherlands. The report also contained some insights about the share of sales through florists:
  • In the gift segments the florist's share is the highest. In terms of personal consumption, there is competition with the supermarket due to price and easy access.
  • Dutch supermarkets compete primarily in terms of price.
  • Florists distinguish themselves in terms of better quality and a wider assortment than the supermarket.
  • About 50% of the revenue consists of cut flowers, 25% of plants, and 25% of other products.
  • There are practically no florist chains in the Netherlands.
  • The corporate market has collapsed due to the crisis, but in the higher segments it is still responsible for about half the turnover.
Along with florists and garden centres, other sales channels like supermarkets, DIY stores, and kiosk, street markets and stalls are clarified in the Facts & Figures Report for the Netherlands

What does a country report tell me?

The Facts & Figures report provides a solid basis for your sales strategy, to increase your sales markets or revive them. It is a reference work containing all relevant country information: from macro-data and consumer data to specific horticultural data. With the insights from the report you can take decisions and create opportunities for sales in countries and/or markets that you may not have considered before.

More information?

The Facts & Figures Report for the Netherlands is available for a fee in Dutch and in English. If you are interested in the report about the Netherlands or the other countries, please contact FloraHolland's Customer Services.

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