AALSMEER, Netherlands: The local auction will continue to exist in Rijnsburg, in addition to the future nationwide, digital auction. That is the outcome of the research that Royal FloraHolland conducted together with the Local Auction sounding board group in recent months. The Royal FloraHolland is happy with this outcome and accepts the advice of the sounding board group.
The Local Auction sounding board group is a diverse and representative group of approximately 20 growers and buyers. During a number of sessions, RFH’s board held discussions with them about their needs and concerns regarding the future digital auction. The discussions revealed that there is a need for an overview of the local, digital auctions; inspections of (almost) all products; a display function for niche and seasonal products, and timely receipt of products.
Royal FloraHolland investigated how it can meet the above-mentioned requirements. The following solutions were defined for this.
RFH has decided to keep the local auctions in Rijnsburg for the time being. However, it will be digitizing the local auctions in Rijnsburg according to schedule. Rijnsburg will therefore keep its local auction schedule at the local digital auctions until at least 2023.
In this way, buyers will be given the time to discover the possibilities of the new (digital) Buyers’ Workstation. In addition, RFH is working on a possible reduction of the number of local auctions in order to thus promote the overview of the number of auctions for buyers that can be followed.
In Rijnsburg – just as in Aalsmeer and Naaldwijk – trolleys will no longer physically appear at Auction. RFH will therefore continue 100% image auctioning there.
Inspections remain possible
The auction will keep the possibility to inspect. Products will be arranged in clusters in cold stores. Moreover, RFH will sort green, blooming, outdoor plants and flowers at the desired number of degrees. In addition, the sounding board group has supplemented the need to have the products be inspected sorted in more depth with the introduction of a ‘buy now button’. RFH believes this tool has the potential to be further developed for Rijnsburg. Furthermore, Royal FloraHolland is developing an app, at the request of the sounding board group, with which a buyer can see where a product can be found.
Display function for niche and seasonal products
There is a clear need to display niche and seasonal products. No clear solution has been formulated for this yet. We will research this further in the coming period. Among other things, for example, the position in the auction schedule will be examined, as well as how auctioneers can draw attention to niche products during the auction.
Timely delivery of products
Concerns were expressed in the sounding board group about delayed delivery of products during the transition to order picking. Research shows, however, that during the transition to order picking, buyers will be given more opportunities to better match the delivery of products to their business processes. That is why the auction is also switching to order picking in Rijnsburg. Rijnsburg will remain a location within the logistics network that links up with Nationwide Auctioning.
Fred Jansen – Hans Visser Plantenexport Aalsmeer bv. – buyer and member of the Local Auction sounding board group comments, “The auctions are an important purchasing channel for Hans Visser and also generate clear added value for our customers. The desires and needs from widely divergent types of stakeholders were identified within the sounding board group. There is not a one-size-fits-all solution; trying to make everyone happy is no easy feat! We worked very hard on a realistic end result within the considerable preconditions that Royal FloraHolland applies.”
Job van Egmond – Van Egmond Matricaria – grower and member of the Local Auction sounding board group says, “It was a pleasure working with the sounding board group. I feel that we listened closely to each other and I saw many recurring points for attention. I am also happy that we were able to do this together with both suppliers and buyers.”
Royal FloraHolland MT gives approval
The above-mentioned solutions were recently presented to the Royal FloraHolland MT. They are happy with this direction and gave their approval.