Royal FloraHolland COVID-19 situation update

Royal FloraHolland released an extra news item in connection with the many questions regarding the tightened supply regulation: a short update on today's pricing, developments in Floriday and answers to the 5 most frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the tightened supply regulation.

Refer also to this Q&A for growers, buyers and relations of Royal FloraHolland, which is revised daily in response to new information.

And finally, Royal FloraHolland have shared another update on the situation in various international markets:

United Kingdom (Source: Ministry of Agriculture)
With immediate effect there are far-reaching restrictions for individuals and companies:

  • People are only allowed to leave their homes for "shopping for basic necessities" (food, medicine); for medical reasons; to care for or help vulnerable people; and to travel to and from work when absolutely necessary.
  • All shops selling non-essential goods must close, including flower shops and garden centres. For example, flowers and plants may still be sold in convenience stores, hospitals, DIY stores, and gas stations. 
  • There is a ban on meetings of more than two people, except if they are members of the same household.
  • Parks remain open, but libraries, playgrounds, outdoor gyms and churches and places of worship are forbidden.

Supermarket Waitrose will withhold essential supplies for NHS employees and give them priority at the cash register upon presentation of an NHS pass. After Sainsbury's, Tesco and Asda also Lidl and Aldi will shorten their opening hours so there will be more time for restocking. Like the retail sector, the British horticultural sector is hoping to attract vacant catering staff to fill staff shortages, in this case mainly caused by labour shortages in the EU as a result of lockdowns.

Belgium (Source: Ministry of Agriculture)
According to the Vlaamse Boerenbond (Flemish Farmers' Union), the trade in ornamental horticulture products has virtually come to a complete standstill, precisely in the run-up to the peak season. After all, for most ornamental plant cultivation products, 20 percent (open field nursery) to 85 percent (bedding and balcony plants) of the turnover is realised in the period from March 15th to May 10th (Mother's Day). Ornamental growers therefore do not understand why flower shops and garden centres in the Netherlands and Germany are allowed to remain open.

Germany (Source: Ministry of Agriculture)
Germany is expected to experience a deep economic recession of between 1.5% and 6% in 2020. When the Corona crisis is over, however, the economy could grow strongly again in 2021, 7.2%-10.9%. According to the Kieler Wirtschaftsforschungsinstitut (IfW). The platform www.daslandhilft.de has been launched on which jobseekers can find vacancies in agriculture. There are several initiatives throughout Germany to link temporary workers to farmers with a shortage of foreign workers at harvest time. A number of digital platforms were developed this weekend at a hackathon #WirvsVirusHack organised by the Federal Government. Last Saturday, Landgard called on everyone who is available to apply for work at the many nurseries in Germany. For this Landgard used the Facebook account of '1000 Gute Gründe' which has a large reach among young people. Through Facebook, people who register are referred to www.saisonarbeit-in-deutschland.de. Other organisations also use this online platform. From the reactions on Facebook, it is still difficult to link supply and demand. Landgard also reported that it is consulting with the German government on keeping migrant workers sufficiently and 'unbureaucratically' available, and even mentioned special 'flights' to mobilise workers.


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