Hoogeveen Plants – strategic vision of sustainable cultivation 2015-2020

We have ambitious plans considering a sustainable production. We owe this to ourselves, our children and most of all; the environment. This is why we are pleased sustainability is getting more attention throughout the supply chain.

Sustainability is one of our core values we carry out throughout the entire company. MPS-GAP is an excellent certificate for delivery to supermarkets or other retailers. MPS-GAP means proven traceability, safety and hygiene of our products. The certification scheme of MPS-GAP is based on GLOBALG.A.P. Changes of GLOBALG.A.P. will be implemented in MPS-GAP, in order to keep MPS-GAP equivalent to GLOBALG.A.P.

MPS-ABC is the underlaying certificate for MPS-GAP. To use the MPS-GAP certificate, each day we record how many crop protection agents we use, when the equipment has been serviced and how we work with the crop. The risk reduction for, and traceability of our plants are important reasons for obtaining the MPS-GAP certificate.

Good working conditions are an important concern to us, many traders and consumers. People are being increasingly critical about cultivation methods and the origin of the product. This is why we’ve chosen the Socially Qualified certificate. The social aspects are just as important to us as the environmental requirements are.

International code of conduct
The MPS-SQ certificate is based on universal human rights and the codes of conduct of representative local organisations. The agreements of the ILO (International Labour Organization) are also included. In practice this means among other things that we have a good understanding of which personnel have a valid spraying permit, or who are trained in-house emergency and first-aid staff. We also have an up-to-date stock list of crop protection agents and fertilisers that are controlled during audits at the company.

Another certificate we are more and more aware of when it comes to sourcing our added value products such as pots, plant supports etc. Basically BSCI is a certificate focusing on human rights and good labour conditions, just like MPS-SQ is.

BSCI is an initiative open to retailers, importers and brands engaged in improving working conditions in their global supply chain. The initiative is working to support buying companies to integrate the BSCI Code of Conduct into the heart of their business practices and develop their supply chain while respecting labour rights. In parallel, BSCI also brings direct benefits to the other actors of the supply chain, including producers, stakeholders and ultimately, workers.

Hoogeveen Plants works on sustainable and bee-friendly crop protection 
By using guidelines from MPS-A, MPS-GAP and MPS-SQ we register and use only legitimate means in dosed portions. To deliver our crops in good quality and free from plagues and damage we sometimes need pesticides. Because of the toxicity of neonicotinoids on bees and other pollinators, we have tightened our business management accordingly. We stopped using ‘Admire’ and other pesticides from this group containing neonicotinoids. We try to reduce the use other chemicals as much as possible.*₁ We do this by growing genetically stronger varieties, focusing on plant resilience and when it comes to pests such as aphids and thrips we first use the natural enemies*₂ of pests, which is better for the bees and the environment. By being more and more selective in the used means, natural enemies of aphids for example are spared and therefore the crops require less spraying. Other measures we take to reduce the use of pesticides are:

Stimulation of the natural enemies.

  • Deployment of natural enemies such as predatory mites and parasitic wasps
  • Use of plant strengtheners for a resilient plant against fungi and other infestations.
  • The newest sensing and warning systems.
  • A new initiative: a natural border on a number of plantations. This has been planted in 2015. This creates a place where natural enemies can flourish and bees can feed on itself. By conscientious actions within the company, Hoogeveen Plants makes sure that bees and other pollinators are saved, as these animals are a vital link in nature and in agriculture and horticulture.With this approach we avoid too much pesticide residues on our products. Step by step we strive for an increasingly sustainable cultivation!

*₁ By recirculating water, drift and the possible use of ditch water / groundwater it is possible that minimal residues may occur on our plants which are no longer used within our company.

*₂ Because we use natural predators it sometimes is possible that some of these natural predators are still in the plants. This also makes them more able-bodied in the store against pests and diseases.