01 December 2013
An established supplier of high quality ornamentals and services, Israel-based Danziger “Dan”Flower Farm has enjoyed over 60 years of sustained growth and diversity, earning them an enviable reputation within the global flower industry. This article takes you through some of the defining moments in Danzigers’ history.
On 14 May 1948, Israel’s first Prime Minister David Ben Gurion read out its declaration of independence in a hall in Tel Aviv. Both Superpower leaders, U.S. President Harry S. Truman and Soviet leader Joseph Stalin, immediately recognised the new state.
What followed was a massive migration of Jews, mostly from Europe, to Israel, where they laid the foundation for a new country, which initially was full of socialist-Zionist ideals of collectivism and egalitarianism. Anybody of a certain age will remember the ‘kibbutz’ – ‘collective’ in Hebrew – with its members living in a single community and sharing the work. Apart from its long-standing tradition in agriculture, Israel made the transition to an economy with a focus on high-tech enterprise.
Strawberries and corn
Among those who arrived before World War II, were Ernst and Zehava Danziger. It was in 1953 that the husband and wife team established their 3 acre nursery just outside Tel Aviv in a moshav (‘village’ in Hebrew) called Mishmar Hashiva.
In the early stages, the Danzigers grew strawberries ( because they both liked them) and corn (because he knew how to grow it), which they later swapped for growing cut flowers such as Gladiolus and Chrysanthemum.
Now 60 years later, Danziger ‘Dan‘ Flower Farm has become Israel’s leading floriculture company. It specialises in the breeding and propagation of an incredibly wide range of cut flowers and bedding plants (more than 300 varieties!). Today, the company employs 250 staff and has an annual output of around 500 million vegetatively propagated cuttings (including licenseed).
To meet the needs of different customers, the company has a highly qualified team of marketing experts who frequently travel to connect with foreign buyers.
Cut flower and bedding plants
Danziger is a truly international company, with its young plant material being sold to over 1000 customers in more than sixty countries. Operating from a 20 acre, state-of-the-art greenhouse complex, Danziger ‘Dan’Flower Farm manages hundreds of licenses, licensing cutting producers and rooting stations worldwide.
Occupying pride of place is Danziger’s flagship product; Gypsophila Million Stars. Known not only by industry professionals but by almost everybody who has an interest in flowers and plants, Gypsophila Million Stars is probably the most famous plant variety name in the world.
Among other important Danziger cut flowers rank Gypsophila, Chrysanthemum, Solidago, Limonium, Hypericum and Aster.
Over the years, Danziger ‘Dan ‘ Flower Farm expanded its range of bedding plants by adding top selling varieties in New Guineas Impatiens, Petunia, Sun Harmony, Calibrachoa, Torenia, Lobularia, Bacopa, Osteospermum, Agryranthemum frutecens, Scaevola, Verbena and many more.
Propagating and breeding
Perfectly in line with Israel’s transition from a predominantly agricultural society into a modern technology driven society, Danziger evolved from grower and propagator into an ultramodern breeding company.
From growing Chrysanthemum flowers for export to the Netherlands in the 1960s and production of Gypsophila plants from tissue culture in the 1970s, Danziger evolved and entered the industry of garden and bedding plants and established its own R&D department, which also included a tissue culture laboratory, and commenced with breeding of various crops such as Gypsophila, Impatiens, Petunia and Chrysanthemums.
Today, Danziger breeds over 600 active varieties and about 80 novelties are launched yearly.
Today, the company is run by the second generation, brothers Micha and Gaby Danziger, who have a magic gift for creating an empowered Danziger team.
Micha and Gaby stress that the key to Danziger’ success is, first and foremost, its employees. There is no substitute for a knowledgeable and productive work force!
Danziger is also known for its ‘Service and quality without compromise’. And according to customers, the company really lives up to their motto. Customer satisfaction seems to form an intrinsic part of the corporate genes: whenever a customer addresses a question, he or she can be sure to receive immediate feedback. It is exactly this type of straightforward business mentality that makes the company so successful. This might look as if it comes naturally, but in reality it is the fruit of perseverance, persuasiveness and the ability to create a real company spirit.