Dutch exports of flowers and plants will end 2023 with a contraction of 286 million euro, or 4 percent. The total export value amounts to 6.8 billion euro. For cut flowers, the export value drops by 5 percent to 4.2 billion euro, for plants the decline is slightly less at 3 percent and exports amount to 2.6 billion euro.

Among the top 10 export countries, the figures for the United Kingdom (-7.1 percent), France (-9.8 percent) and Sweden (-11.8 percent) are particularly disappointing. For the most important export country Germany, the damage remains limited with a decrease of 2.3 percent. The export for Germany amounts to 1.7 billion euro, making its share in total exports more than 25 percent.

In the top 10 list, only exports to Poland and Belgium have increased. Outside this ranking, the decline is relatively minor and this indicates a further spread of export opportunities. This is the second year in a row that Dutch floriculture has had to deal with significantly lower export figures.

Marketers also expect a series of challenges, a modern word for difficulties, in the floriculture trade for 2024. There are elections in various European countries and this may translate into some political instability with consequences for the business climate. There is also a lot of concern because of the political unrest in Israel and Ecuador, important supply countries to the Dutch floriculture sector.

In addition, there are persistent obstacles to the sale of flowers and plants to the United Kingdom, because Brexit has still not been properly arranged. This year there will be additional measures for cut flowers that will entail additional checks and costs.

Picture: Dutch Flower Group