Dutch Rose grower Arend Roses gives priority to sustainability. “We want to be sustainable in all aspects of the company: in our customer relationships, in the production process and for our employees”, says sales manager Niels van Starkenburg. How does the rose company do this?
Arend Roses produces roses on almost 11 hectares, divided over two locations in Maasland. "We grow eight varieties. Seven of them are exclusively available from us." Every year, the company produces around 45 million roses. Arend Roses has various sustainability certificates.
Arend Roses is one of the few growers with the Florimark Production certificate. "It means we work transparently, with maximum attention for environmental, quality and social aspects. Florimark Production is the highest possible certificate for growers in the area of sustainability." The company also has the MPS-GAP certificate. "We use biological crop protection products. We are transparent; we have to register the products that we use. I think this is an advantage, because it provides us with structure and insights."
Arend Roses also pays attention to its staff. This is evident from the MPS-Socially Qualified certificate. "We ensure a safe working environment, good employment terms and a pleasant work climate. Employees are given responsibility and the possibility to develop. We organize gatherings for permanent and temporary employees, such as a barbecue or Christmas drinks. They appreciate this. The temporary employees also feel like they are part of the company. Some of them have been working with us for years, and that is good for the quality of our product. If you are good to your employees, they are good to your company and your customers."
The rose grower looks for sustainable solutions for all activities within the company. "For example, we collect rainwater for the rose plants and generate our own energy. The heat that is released in this process is used to heat the greenhouses. We collect the water that we use. This way, we can reuse it." Arend Roses is also thinking about alternatives for the plastic sleeves. "This is quite difficult", Niels admits. "Degradable sleeves are still under development." Arend Roses currently uses packaging with support shelving to transport the roses. "This allows us to use shorter cardboard collars, which results in less waste. We can even fit more roses in a package, which is more efficient in terms of transport, saves costs and is more sustainable. This way, we want to work towards a sustainable company in all areas."