A good product sells itself
The zamioculcas, or Zanzibar Gem, was once the blockbuster plant of the consumer market. Now Ed Bruinen from Edplant is on the lookout for new successes. And he also knows that there is money to be made on the energy market.
Although you may sometimes see them roll past the auction clock, Edplant nursery in Maasdijk sells 99 percent of its zamioculcas via an intermediary agency. "A conscious decision", says director Bruinen, "Because that makes a lot more money." The biggest run on the plant is now over and the market is stabilising. Of the roughly thirty or forty growers in the Netherlands, Edplant is certainly not the largest, but has filled the attractive niche market of offering not the lowest price, but very high quality. Bruinen: "Everyone is still willing to pay. As long as they get a really good product for their money, and preferably something exclusive. Just look at the phalaenopsis. Or all those luxury consumer goods."
Control over the cultivation cycle
"No, there are no varieties, there is only one zamioculcas. Tests have been conducted into different types, such as a colourful range. But nobody has succeeded so far. For us, quality is having control over the entire cultivation cycle. We take cuttings ourselves, because the less foreign material you bring in, the lower the disease pressure. This is important for business continuity, but also don't forget that having to use pesticides pollutes the environment", says Bruinen.
Trading independently on the APX
"In the old complex, we used a CHP unit that belonged to the utility company. But a quick calculation showed that it would be very lucrative to take things into our own hands. For the first year here at the new site, there is still a fixed agreement with the utility company about the return price of CHP energy, but we now have sufficient confidence to start trading independently on the APX and OTC market soon. To do that, of course, you need a unit and a service organisation behind you that you can trust blindly. My brother-in-law had been doing business with Centrica Business Solutions for years (then ENER-G Nedalo), and my experience with them was also good. They are very motivated and keep to all their agreements. And to get me up and running as quickly as possible, they often worked on the unit until eleven o'clock at night. Hats off to them, they really go all out – including if I still need them now. And my brother has now also chosen to work with them. With CHP units it's the same as with plants: a good product will sell itself."
Why Centrica Business Solutions?
Centrica Business Solutions is the oldest supplier of CHP units in the Netherlands and has the largest fleet of CHP units in Europe. As an authorised MTU service dealer, we supplied Edplant with a 1160 kW MTU gas installation in an indoor configuration. Here too, Centrica Business Solutions is proving to be a true horticulture specialist. Customers that make intelligent choices in terms of energy will see their returns grow even faster than their crops.