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Dutch Grower and Consultant Marc Groenewegen
Visiting New Zealand in November
In November, Dutch consultant and tomato grower Marc Groenewegen, is coming to New Zealand. Marc will be visiting growers he consults to, as well as presenting at a Grower2Grower breakfast in Pukekohe.
Marc is 52 years old, married and has one son. He is a tomato grower based in Zeeland, Holland, and is a member of the Prominent Growers Group. https://www.prominent-tomatoes.nl/en/over-prominent/ . Marc is involved in growing crops with and without lighting systems. He is familar with using many different heating systems including, wood, earth warmth, GHP.
In Marc’s own words;
“I like people with a passion. A passion for work or a hobby can be very satisfying. Letting a passion grow into an art, wanting to be the best at something, trend-setting or pioneering. Growing tomatoes is my passion. In the moderate Dutch climate, it is not difficult to grow a balanced crop, which makes cultivation boring. In foreign climates it is often much more extreme and you need different equipment than in the Netherlands. So it is precisely in foreign countries that there is much to learn. Every year, I visit at least one tomato company in a unique location abroad.
I enjoy maintaining the contacts I’ve made. I use the problems they encounter and the experience I gain from them in my own cultivation. As a result, my cultivation is not only developed according to Dutch standards, but according to global insights. Every company adapts to the place where it is located. It is the same with people. That is why I always compare places and crops with people. You have cultural differences and characters. A company in Vancouver looks very different from one in the Emirates. A Chinese person looks different to an Eskimo. An Italian walks in his shorts and a Swede has Thermo underwear.
From the first day, the crop must be steered in the right ratio of sink and source. If you don’t expose people and plants to stimuli they become unimaginative and lazy. You have to trick them into doing their best, to stand out, to fight, to survive and to emerge victorious in the end. The most resilient and the one who best adapts to the changing circumstances will win. Not the one who runs the fastest or grows the fastest.
This includes a healthy dose of stress every day. This will trick people into building in more certainties. Plants invest in their flower and pollen quality. The basic needs must be sufficiently fulfilled and in the right proportion. Every decade, we see that people are getting older on average and plants are producing more.
Experiencing all these things again and again makes me feel like a kind of tomato father, a walking encyclopaedia for growers who are looking for a sparring partner when their cultivation and organisation is not running as desired. By exchanging online video images and data, you can keep a tight rein on the cultivation from the other side of the world and steer it from a distance. The new way of autonomous cultivation. Improving yields in this way, together with the growers, gives me a universally good feeling!”
SAVE THE DATE: Grower2Grower breakfast is scheduled for Thursday 17th of November in Pukekohe, South Auckland. Registration details will be released on the G2G website in two weeks.
Video above the woodchip/biomass fired solution that is used at Marc’s growing operation. CO2 is also captured from the burning of the biomass.
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