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Year overview February

North American expansions, tomato agreement cancelled

February saw several major expansions in North America, in part made possible with private equity funding. Two companies had a party that month celebrating their anniversaries, and there was plenty to see and do at the Fruit Logistica in Berlin and HortiContact in the Netherlands. The biggest news, however, was probably the Tomato Suspension Agreement not being renewed, while Plantagon's bankruptcy also made headlines.

Equilibrium Capital on Revol Greens & Houwelings investments
“Access to equity capital is a competitive advantage”
There’s a new kid on the block investing in the greenhouse industry. Early this year, Revol Greens announced a facility equity partnership with Equilibrium Capital - and just two weeks later Houweling’s Group was connected to the same investment company. Then there's a third investment, in a yet to-be-named…

"excellent growth in the category"
NatureFresh Farms doubles organic production in Canada
Consumer demand for organic and locally-grown produce has inspired NatureFresh Farms to expand on their organic greenhouse offerings at their Ontario facility. The company is not only significantly expanding their organic acreage in Canada, but also adding a number of items to their organic list. The…

'Dream Team' helps Thiel's move into hydroponic lettuce
CAN (AB): Ornamental plant grower opens hydroponic lettuce greenhouse
Thiel's Greenhouses is a household name in the horticulture industry. Serving the Lamont, Fort Saskatchewan, Bruderheim and Vegreville areas in Alberta with ornamental plants since 1958, current owner Nadine Stielow has taken the business to new levels. The next phase in the grower's career is the opening of…

additional five acres
Production started in most recent Whole Leaf expansion
With consumers looking for more from their produce, at least one Canadian greenhouse grower is positioning itself as an environmentally-friendly and safe choice for leafy greens. Coaldale, Alberta-based Whole Leaf is a greenhouse grower of a variety of lettuces including romaine, butter, Batavia and other assorted greens. “We’ve…

with expansion plans
Riococo celebrating 15 years in business
There's a party going on at Riococo. The provider of 100% organic coir based growing media solutions is celebrating 15 years of service to agriculture and horticulture industry. Nowadays the company is serving over thousands of acres in 52 countries across 6 continents. For the upcoming year, a new facility…

Powerplants Australia celebrates 25 years
Powerplants are celebrating their 25th Anniversary this February. Founder Carl Van Loon, whilst working in his family’s nursery business, realised that people who understood greenhouse technology were very rare, giving him the inspiration to solve this problem for the Australian horticulture industry. Carl studied Mechanical Engineering and then…

Photo report: Horticulture at Fruit Logistica 2019:
With growers present from all over the world, the Fruit Logistica is the most important exhibition for many horticultural suppliers. While it might not be the trade show where novelties are presented, it is the show where you meet up with growers and retail. Horticulture over the last couple of years the horticultural presence at the exhibition has…

and nobody got hurt
Photo Report: 466 horticultural suppliers on 18,000m2
An exhibition floor of just 18,000 m2 big that - when you do your best to finish it in time - will not take you longer than three hours to cross. However, on that same exhibition floor you can find Bosman Van Zaal, KUBO, Certhon, Havecon, Bom Group, VB Group, Gakon and Luiten. While crossing the 20 paths,…

Mexican export bigger than ever
Uncertainty in Mexican-US tomato trade following agreement termination
Is the tomato trade between Mexico and the US heading for a trade war? With the announcement of the US Department of Commerce to withdrawal from the Tomato Suspension Agreement, the future of the Mexican tomato export is insecure. What's going on? The Tomato Suspension Agreement sets different floor prices for Mexican…

Oscar Woltman, AMPHAC:
"The consumer will pay when the Tomato Suspension Agreement fails"
"I don't see how terminating the agreement will benefit anybody. Not the Mexican companies, nor the Floridan ones. And worst of all: not the consumer. In the end they will pay when the Tomato Suspension Agreement fails." This says Oscar Woltman with AMHPAC, representing the Mexican greenhouse industry. His…

What will happen if the Tomato Suspension Agreement isn't renewed?
If the Tomato Suspension Agreement is not renewed before May 7, the almost 800 exporting producers of Mexican red tomatoes will have to pay temporary export bonds to ship the product to the USA, which would imply a considerable financial…

Swedish vertical farming company Plantagon International bankrupt
Another major vertical farming bankruptcy. This week, Plantagon International has been declared bankrupt. Cashflow problems turned out to be unsurmountable for the Swedish company. Agritechture Plantagon International is headquartered in Stockholm and describes themselves as an Agritechture company. "Plantagon moves food…

bankrupt company looks for buyers
"Sad days for everybody who believes in Plantagon"
"Despite opportunities in Sweden, the United Arab Emirates and several other markets we were unable to last until the commercial breakthrough came. The primary goal is now to protect the Plantagon innovations and, in close cooperation with the…

Greenhouse industry mourns loss of leading figure
It is with great sadness that the Richel Group announces the passing of its founding father. Pierre Richel passed away on Wednesday 23 January 2019, aged 92, after what he himself described as a fulfilling, colourful career. Standing among those visionaries who are always ahead of their time, Pierre Richel recognised the need to develop…

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