ID'Flor is the most sustainable horticulturist of the 2010 Floralies

On 13 April 2010, the Flemish Horticulture Environment Plan (VMS) awarded the five-yearly prize for ‘Most sustainable horticulturist in Flanders’ to ID' Flor. The prize was awarded for the 3th time at the start of the Floralies. By rewarding the company ID’Flor with the ‘2010 Floralies prize for the most sustainable horticulturist’ VMS wants to make the public at large aware of the fact that horticulture also contributes to an improved live and work environment. On the basis of objective criteria VMS shows that in the past five years ID’Flor made far-reaching efforts in the field of the environment, attention to man and society and always in balance with sound management. The management of ID’Flor tries to implement the philosophy and associated efforts in the company, not by means of high-flown words but in particular by actions, as appeared from the press moment during the handing over of the VMS prize.

ID'Flor invests in the environment
Sustainable horticulture companies register the energy, fertilisers and pesticides they consume with MPS (the Dutch partner of VMS). Every quarter these data are processed into an environment score, and in this way companies are provided with a powerful tool in the strive to decrease the use of pollutants that are part and parcel of the production process. In their waste policy VMS companies pursue minimum production and optimum recycling. The business philosophy also includes a well thought-out water policy focused on minimum use of water. Drilling for groundwater is avoided. So plants are only watered with the rainwater that is captured from the company surface area. Water that is not absorbed by the plants is not wasted, but captured and reused. This is very important for the environment, because this water generally contains dissolved fertilisers that should not end up in nature.
ID’Flor cultivates Clivias, Azaleas, Rhododendrons and Leditsias and takes great account of everything mentioned above. This is apparent from the general company philosophy, but also from its environmental scores which were consistently high in the past few years.

ID'Flor invests in society
On other fronts too the company pursues highly socially sound operation. ID’Flor opens its doors during public events such as “Op de Siertoer” or “Op de siertoer for Kids”. The entire company commits itself every day anew to an improved work environment. This is achieved for example by critically dealing with risks to safety and hygiene. By organising activities and consulting moments, ID’Flor creates optimum involvement of its staff in their work. This shows that ID’Flor, but also numerous other horticulture companies, are clearly aware of their social mission. They understand that this goes beyond offering beautiful plants for the garden and living room.

VMS achieves success for the environment!
Meanwhile VMS and its members have been cooperating on sustainable horticulture for 15 years. And on moments like this, when the whole world is watching us, we can show that this is also a powerful asset of Flemish horticulturists. And the figures prove us right. From the MPS annual report it appears that the use of plant protection substances and fertilisers decreased by more than 10 per cent over a period of four years (05 – 08)! Moreover, VMS members clearly opt more frequently for less harmful products when they perform a treatment. This is an achievement for which there is no match in most other countries where MPS operates.

Criteria for the VMS sustainability prize:
In the past five years the winner has continuously been a member of VMS.
• The winning grower always obtained an A qualification and has a high average score.
• The winner preferably also obtained another sustainability certificate.
• The companies that met these criteria were given points according to the formula: average MPS score of 5 years minus 70 points plus 10 points per additional sustainability certificate.

In the picture (left to right): Etienne Floré (ID'Flor), Griet Grillaert (VMS) and Egon Triest (VMS)
Photographer: Willy De Geest

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