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Abstract

Today most flowers physically pass through the auction houses on their fixed routes from (inter)national growers to (inter)national customers. Physical presence is necessary to allow for physical inspection, quality control and break-bulk activities. Several developments, such as new markets in Eastern Europe and increased virtualization, stimulate the chain to become an efficient florticultural hub-network, in which cut flowers, plants and other products are delivered to customers taking different (direct) routes and using different logistics concepts. The Dutch sector aims to (continue to) be the (virtual) florticultural trading hub of Europe, and has therefore started a 4-year new project called DAVINC3I. The project’s objective is to strengthen the international leading competitive position of the Dutch floriculture sector in a global, virtualized trade network by researching (1) the opportunities for new logistics coordination, consolidation and collaboration concepts in extended international tradeparc networks, and (2) the possibilities for making chain information directly and real-time available and usable to support decision making of all partners in the horticultural network. The aim of this paper is to discuss current floriculture sector developments in supply and demand and identify the main logistics bottlenecks and opportunities for improvement. Based on literature reviews and expert knowledge the research (logistics) challenges that arise from the market developments are revealed.

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