Traditionally, herb sales are slightly diminished during the summer holiday. “Unless it is 30 degrees Celsius, which is when we see an increase in coriander and mint sales, but we have not yet experienced that this summer,” says Jacqueline Monden of De Kruidenaer, a Dutch grower of hydroponic lettuce. “However, I think we have passed the holiday slump now. Schools in the north of the Netherlands have started again today, and we are already seeing decent demand. Especially sales of basil, mint and coriander are doing well.”
Hydroponic herb cultivation
In recent years, De Kruidenaer expanded its cultivation in tunnels and outdoor, and they have also expanded their hydroponic cultivation. “This all started on a small scale with several testing ponds in which several varieties of herb were planted. Results were good. By now, we have hydroponic cultivation of one hectare of basil and a small hectare of mint and chive. It is not an easy cultivation method, and because there are hardly any similar cultivations for herbs, we are doing a lot of pioneering,” says Monden.
“The product has already won an innovation prize, and meets a large buyers’ demand. Besides the fact that it is clean cultivation, this method provides several other advantages. It is low in emission, free of residues, safe, provides good working conditions, and makes steering production easier. It supplies a reliable product with constant quality year-round,” Monden summarises. “We are definitely going to increase production in coming years.”
Competition of import herbs is limited according to Monden. “We work with certified producers in, for example, Spain, Kenya and Israel, but during this period of the year most of the herbs we supply are Dutch.”
For more information:De Kruidenaer BV
4874 ND Etten-Leur