Agriculture and food: the Netherlands and China

The Netherlands is your partner in agriculture and food.

The agriculture sector comprises all economic activity relating to food, from production to marketing and distribution.

Exporting nation

The Netherlands is the second-largest exporter of agricultural products in the world, after the United States. It is known for its flowers, cheese, tomatoes, vegetables and beer.

The Dutch horticulture sector has an extensive logistics network. Vegetables harvested in the Netherlands can be sold in New York the very same day.


The Dutch food sector has developed smart storage and packaging technologies that keep food fresh longer.

The Netherlands wants to reduce the use of antibiotics in food production in order to combat antimicrobial resistance in humans and animals.

The Netherlands shares its expertise in food production with developing countries. It is committed to a free market with safe, sustainably produced food.


Research and innovation are vital to Dutch agriculture and horticulture. Dutch agri-food companies and knowledge institutions do innovative work in many areas, including sustainability and nutrition.

Agri-food: the Netherlands and your country or region

The Netherlands is a major agricultural powerhouse. Although small in size, the Netherlands it is the second largest exporter of agricultural products in the world after the US. Flowers, fruits and vegetables, cheese and other dairy products, meat and meat products, beer, chocolate, starch derivatives, and seeds; the Netherlands produces them all in large amounts for markets around the world. Dairy specifically covers 40% of the Dutch agro-export to China.

Both the Netherlands and China find themselves in an important phase of development, in which there is more and more concern for animal welfare, food safety and food security. Since the Chinese government puts the development of food supply and agriculture as high priority, the Netherlands and China can work together on the agricultural products distribution, knowledge and technology in this field.

The government of the Netherlands believes that healthy, safe food begins with sustainable agriculture and a concern for animal welfare. In this regard the Dutch and Chinese consumers share a concern for food safety and food security. Consumers need to have confidence that what they eat will not be harmful to their health. Moreover, there should be enough safe food available for everyone.

Changes in society have a large impact on the agricultural sector. The growing population and the rise in prosperity are changing consumer patterns, making raw materials scarcer and putting more pressure on the environment. This requires new ideas about the role agriculture plays in society. Agricultural production for sustainable and nutritious food for all consumers asks for changes. The government of the Netherlands attaches great value to sustainable production, careful use of insecticides and pesticides, and high standards for animal welfare.

Participating in a Holland Pavilion

During the 2019 HortiflorExpo IPM China, the Agricultural Department of the Kingdom of the Netherlands Embassy in Beijing and Consulate General in Shanghai organized a seminar on Sustainable Horticulture Development – Experiences in the Netherlands. The aims of the seminar were to present audiences with the state-of-the-art horticulture technology from the Netherlands and to strengthen the co-operation between the two countries. Mr. Henk Stigter, Agricultural Counselor at Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Beijing, hosted this seminar.

Hortiflor Expo IMP China 2019

Welcome to the HortiFlor Exo IPM China 2019

[Henk Stigter, Agricultural Counsellor at the Netherlands Embassy in Beijing]

Ladies and gentlemen, good morning,

Special welcome to madame Zhang of the China flower association, we very much appreciate that you are here this morning.

Horticulture is still booming business in China. Suitable innovation and high-tech solutions are high on the agenda of the horticulture sector. Today we have a seminar, very happy we have a full house, focusing on high-tech greenhouse technology and circular horticulture.

[Ibo Gulsen, Manager of Jansen Overseas BV China]

Hello, my name is Ibo Gulsen of Jansen Overseas.

We are very happy to be at this expo again. At today’s seminar we actually talked about how to make flower festivals and how to make flower parks successful. That basically depends on a number of factors. So firstly it depends on your operating and business model, so whether it’s seasonal or year-round. Secondly, what is the story you want to tell? How do you want to attract the people, what do you want them to experience. So that all comes back to the design of a flower show, how to make it effective and impactful. And then you have your planting plan. We actually support the whole process from design and business model to actually the planting plan and the flowers you need for that.

We had a very good exchange today with the public and audience during the seminar, lots of questions. You can always review our presentation online. Thank you!

[Fulco Wijdooge, General Manager of Ridder Group Shanghai]

Warm welcome everybody to the Ridder Group from the Netherlands.

Today we had a very successful seminar, talking about circular economy and circular horticulture. And how this affects our planet and our life. It was a very successful engagement with everybody’s presence. Together, China and the Netherlands can build a better future for our children, for our world, by using circular ideas to reduce energy usage and also making more profits for the horticultural industry.

Thank you, I hope everyone can build towards a beautiful, safe and healthy planet.

[Weird Vonk, General manager of Hoogendoorn Asia]

The greenhouse industry in the Netherlands is developing new technology continuously. These new technologies are not only used in the Netherlands, but also in China. To match the Chinese market, such technologies should be adapted, especially in terms of climate conditions. Hoogendoorn provides a complete solution for climate control. Together with other Dutch greenhouse builders we bring this technology to China. It’s a high-yield solution which benefits Chinese growers.

[closing screen]

Interested in participating in future events? You can always reach out to us through