Last week Koppert Biological Systems took part in the Dutch horticultural trade mission to Kazakhstan co-organized by Dutch Greenhouse Delta (DGD). The program included a meeting with the Prime Minister of the Republic of Kazakhstan A. Mamin and a round table with Kazakhstani business, chaired by the Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Kazakhstan M. Tleuberdi. In addition, several meetings with representatives of Kazakhstani Authorities in the capital Nur-Sultan, in Aktobe, in the Uralsk region and the Almati region, were organised. The mission is initiated by Dutch Greenhouse Delta, and organized in close cooperation with the Embassy of the Republic of Kazakhstan in the Kingdom of the Netherlands and Kazakh Invest. The aim of the mission was to position the Dutch agriculture and horticulture sector as: ‘’The Dutch answer to Kazakhstan’s demand for self-sufficiency in food production, increased labour productivity and eco-system development.’’
Kazakhstani Government supports the development of the sector
During the mission official and business circles of Kazakhstan and the Netherlands discussed issues of mutual investment cooperation. The Dutch companies shared their vision of the development of a modern agro-industrial complex and the transition to sustainable agriculture. Also, the latest breeding solutions were introduced, in which advanced digital technologies, including artificial intelligence and Big Data, are used. André Carstens, the Dutch Ambassador of Kazakhstan: "The potential of this region has long been underestimated. Fortunately, during Corona, the Kazakhs have not been idle, nor have we. Dutch Greenhouse Delta, the umbrella organization of Dutch horticultural suppliers, is now responding perfectly to this with this mission. Supply and demand are perfectly matched now that the limits of Dutch food exports have been reached and we want to share our know-how with other countries to help them to feed themselves. Kazakhstan is still a net food importer, the country has a huge surface area and wants to diversify its economy at a rapid pace. This is, a classic win-win situation!" Participant in this mission Henri Oosthoek, CEO of Koppert Biological Systems adds: “We noticed that the horticulture in Kazakhstan develops faster than in the surrounding countries and that the Kazakhstani Government supports the development of the sector with various incentives. This was the right time to share our knowledge and solutions for sustainable agriculture.’’
Modern greenhouses indispensable for achieving the desired degree of self-sufficiency
Henk van Tuijl, Export manager Kubo about the mission: ‘’The various visits and the extensive attention paid by the hosts and local media confirm our expectations of the market for high-quality horticultural projects in Kazakhstan. Given the challenging climatic conditions in Kazakhstan, I am sure that modern greenhouses will be indispensable for achieving the desired degree of self-sufficiency in vegetable production.’’ Although Kazakhstan has had modern greenhouses for more than a decade, from a strategy point of view they are just now starting. In my opinion, the Dutch adaptive greenhouse technology has a lot to offer to the Kazakhstani horticultural sector, especially when it comes to saving resources like water and energy and maximizing yield.”, Valentyna Domkina of Lugvig Svensson, claims.
New business development
The goal of this mission was to strengthen and boost the relationship between the Netherlands and Kazakhstan in the field of agriculture and horticulture with a long-term approach. And additionally, to position the Dutch agriculture and horticulture sector as an answer to Kazakhstan’s demand for self-sufficiency in food production, increased labour productivity and eco-system development. Eric Egberts, CEO of DGD: ‘’With this mission, we created awareness and interest to invest in the Dutch eco-system for sustainable and profitable food production, including how to move from traditional to modern production.’’ Finally, the parties signed six Memoranda of Understanding (MOU’s), aimed at the new business development, primarily in the field of greenhouses. ‘’The MOU’s signed are amongst others aimed at the specific construction of greenhouses in Uralsk, the expansion of greenhouses in Aktobe Oblast, and the opening of a training centre in Turkestan Oblast.
The horticultural mission to Kazakhstan was initiated by Dutch Greenhouse Delta. The following organizations also participated in this mission: Certhon, Dalsem, Food Ventures, Gakon, HAS University of Applied Sciences, Hoogendoorn Growth Management, HVA International, KUBO, Ridder Group, Rijk Zwaan, Solynta, Svensson and Van Der Hoeven Horticultural Projects.