With the rise of discounters, DIY stores and retailers that include plants in their range of products, garden centers are looking for ways to stand out. And in Scandinavia it is all about quality. "This part of Europe prefers high quality over low prices. They are willing to pay extra for it", says Rene Steur of OZPlanten. For many years, this Dutch exporter has been supplying Danish garden centers; this week, they attended one of the most important trade fairs for garden centers in Scandinavia, namely Fagmessen 2019.
Kumar Sivanathan and Rene Steur (Photo made by Poulsen, Blomster, Denmark).
Together with his new colleague Kumar Sivanathan, Steur represented OZPlanten. "It is the show for garden centers, as well as retailers, to gain inspiration for their spring assortment. It's been held for many years now - at least over 20 years - and always takes place in January. During this time of the year, many garden centers in Scandinavia are closed. In total, around 80 exhibitors are presenting their products and services at the Odense Congress Center in Odense."
For OZPlanten, the Fagmessen is the opportunity to meet their Danish customers. "Over the last two days, we met all our existing customers and we even met some new potential clients. It is a very good show and is for professionals only."
According to Steur, OZPlanten's broad assortment of house and garden plants and the fact that they can supply customized orders, is what attracts the attention of the garden centers. "And of course, not to forget, quality is highly important. In this way, they can differentiate themselves from the large retailers, discounters and DIY stores. This part of Europe prefers high quality over low prices. They are willing to pay a little extra for it."
Over the last year, this Dutch exporter has been increasing volumes to Denmark and is planning to increase even further and invest in their relationships with them. "In general, the Danish customer is very loyal to their supplier, but to better assist them, we hired Sivanathan. Last year, he entered the company and speaks Danish fluently. In this way, we can even better assist our customers and can expand in this market."