ENKHUIZEN, Netherlands: Only a few hours after the FlowerTrials board set 6 April as deadline to cancel or proceed, flower breeder and propagator Syngenta Flowers has decided to withdraw from this year’s event.
In statement the company says, “Considering the continued concern surrounding the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19), the Dutch Government issued a legal order banning mass gatherings, closing all schools, restaurants, bars and many more public venues until April 6. Many local governments have taken additional measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
Syngenta Flowers cares about the industry and feels that in times like this, our industry and growers have other priorities and it simply doesn’t feel right to host the FlowerTrials this year, For that reason, we decided to cancel our upcoming FlowerTrials event.”
Sandra Verlaat, Head of Marketing Europe stresses that the FlowerTrials play an important role in our industry, in terms of face to face contact and novelty showcase. “Our marketing team started working on organising a virtual alternative to Syngenta’s FlowerTrials presentation. In this way we can still share the insights of our new varieties and innovative genetics. But first things first, we still find ourselves trying to make sense of this new chapter in our industry. Our sales team is in contact with our customers to help them address the many difficult dilemmas the face right now and we do our bit in helping them through this. Let’s hope the industry will soon be back to business.”
Syngenta Flowers participation to other trade shows in Europe and all other customer facing events until June 30 is cancelled whilst the company closely monitors the developments around COVID-19.
Syngenta Flowers operations in Enkhuizen and the Westland area are currently operational with a limited number of employees and can be contacted by phone/email. Visitors are not allowed at this time, in accordance with the advice of the Dutch government.
Commenting on Syngenta withdrawal from the 2020 FlowerTrials Mark Schermer, Head of Syngenta Flowers Europe, says, “Health and safety of our employees, customers and families are top priority. COVID-19 is heavily impacting our industry, from breeding company to grower and retailer and we believe canceling all events until summer is the best thing we can do. Not only from a financial perspective, but above all to protect our people, our customers and their families. Once we are passed this pandemic, we will need to work together to bring flowers our industry back on track again. For now, we choose to focus on keeping our people and customers safe and mitigating the impact of this critical situation.”