But the 3.8 billion euro takings were better than May’s forecast of a 10% drop in sales. Organisers blamed the strong euro for causing a drop in sales and prices in export countries.
Cut flowers made up 2.1 billion of the total (down 12%) but house and garden plants outperformed the market with sales growth of 4%, accounting for 1.7 billion euros.
FloraHolland general manager Timo Huges said the fact that the number of flowers sold was similar to last year — 12 billion pieces – showed consumers were still buying plants and flowers despite the economy.
"The ornamental plant and flower industry continues undaunted. We are still leading internationally with sustainability and innovation. With energy-neutral or even energy-generating greenhouses, productivity increases through multi-layer greenhouse construction and a floating greenhouse, the sector is investing not only in itself, but also in the Dutch economy," Huges added.
Subscribe to Horticulture Week for more news, more in-depth features and more technical and market info.