Harvest House turns ten this year. Several growers officially established this Dutch cooperative on April 9, 2013. "It had to be a chain organization focused on fruiting vegetables," says Jelte van Kammen, general manager at Harvest House. "That's still our strength."
"Our role's changed somewhat, though. Ten years ago, our members' payout price was the most important thing. Now, we also play the vital part of a chain director and connector. We focus on lobbying themes, push for sustainability, and encourage and facilitate the cultivation of R&D projects. Our growers are all enterprising and progressive and demand this attitude from Harvest House too. We're always looking at how we can do things better," Jelte explains.
An anniversary always calls for reflection, and Harvest House has reached many milestones in the last decade. "I'm proud of our story: we're a source of healthy living. We make a healthy contribution to the world. Sustainability-wise, we've set the playing field in motion, including with the Hortifootprint, a climate-neutral certified product, and current joint lobbying with FVO and Stop the food fight. Snijpunt and Food Fellows are other milestones."
"We offer added value in the chain with these. And growth-wise, we have quite a few hectares, with production in Tunisia, Morocco, Portugal, France, and Egypt and some organic cultivation," Jelte remarks. "I consider our organization's professionalization and how we've built our trademark marketing from the beginning true milestones too. Also, we continually discuss how to market our fruiting vegetables with several major European retailers."
Harvest House likes looking ahead too. "We'll keep focusing on fruiting vegetables and high-tech greenhouse cultivation. Data and AI are becoming increasingly important. We're also moving towards further internationalization and scaling up cultivation companies as growers work together more and more. We must maintain the right course to remain relevant. That requires leadership and decisiveness," Jelte concludes.
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