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Recovery of ornamentals sector due to high prices, but uncertainty remains


Traditionally, summer is a slack period for the flower trade, but the exceptional circumstances caused by corona led to market shortages with higher prices and a higher turnover. 

The cut flowers turnover has not yet returned to the level of last year. However, turnover recovered in the summer months. Until August the flower auction turnover is still 8% behind last year. Up to and including May, the gap was 19%.

For potted plants, too, the recovery of the market continued. From May onwards, partly due to an upturn in demand, there was a shortage of supply. In June, sales of most products were higher and, in combination with remaining high prices, this led to a turnover for this month which was 51% higher than in 2019. July saw an increase in the turnover of potted plants of 26%. This continued through August, which helped catch up some of the backlog due to corona. Up until and through August, the decline in turnover was 2%.

Auction turnover of garden plants in the past months was considerably higher than in the same period in 2019. Overall, up until and through August a 11% higher turnover was realised than in 2019. Due to corona measures, consumers in Western Europe spend more time in their garden and also spend more on plants.

Most of the Dutch flowers and plants are exported to countries in Europe, whereby Germany is by far the most important destination. In June and July, exports of flowers and plants – garden and potted plants – shot up compared to 2019, but in August the market stabilised. Overall, sales of cut flowers up until and through August are lagging behind exports in 2019 by more than 9%, while the shortfall in sales of potted and garden plants was less than half a per cent.

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Auction turnover

Industry data export

Huib Silvis

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