The public-private partnership Horticultural Connection has officially been formed, through the signing of a covenant between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, the Netherlands Enterprise Agency and seven Dutch supplying companies of the horticultural sector on May 30. The Mexican Embassy in The Hague was also represented. The covenant was signed for a period of three years.
Horticultural Connection has the main objective to make a considerably increase of the export of Dutch technology, plant material (seeds and seedlings) and knowledge for the sustainable production of fruit, vegetables and ornamentals in Mexico by helping the Mexican horticultural sector to develop sustainable production systems. In total, the Dutch government and the companies will invest through their active involvement together almost 1,3 million euros.
Together the companies that are part of Horticultural Connection have everything that a Mexican grower needs for an optimal fruit, vegetable and ornamental cultivation. Each company brings in their own area of expertise in the field of young plants, greenhouses and climate systems, climate control and irrigation, mechanical engineering, stone wool, potting soil and coco products, thermal and shade screens, cultivation floors and recirculation systems, pots, containers and tray systems and logistics, distribution, marketing and sales: Grow Group, Saint-Gobain Cultilene, Flier Systems, Hoogendoorn Growth Management, Van der Knaap Group of Companies (Forteco), Global Green Team and VB Climate.
Mexico is a vibrant and growing economy. Its young protected horticulture industry has grown consistently in the last 15 years as well as the expectations of a sector avid of knowledge and added value. These expectations made the partnership Horticultural Connection consortium aware of the opportunities and wishes of the Mexican market. The ambition of Mexico to be a central player in the region as a producer of fresh food, provides not only opportunities for The Netherlands in export, but also opens possibilities to build sustainable relations with Mexican producers and the Mexican government. The next years quality and export regulations on horticultural products will get extra attention. In order to fulfil stringent guidelines of importing countries there is a need to improve the production of horticultural products in terms of quality, food safety, sustainability and reliability.
The private partners have already taken the first step to organise themselves and commence a local business centre in Mexico. The public-private partnership is the next step. The next years they will invest substantially in a commercial demonstration centre that will function as a place for workshops and seminars to inform Mexicans, from different levels and background.