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Article in trade journal De Boomkwekerij


Remy Lubbe, director Molter perennials

'Stop supplying Russia'

Molter Perennials has stopped their deliveries to Russia. Director Remy Lubbe calls on colleagues in the branche to do the same, but is disappointed in the reactions of other companies. “Most growers think it's cool to quickly send a truck to Russia. I think it's selfish.”

You want growers and traders to stop supplying to Russia. Why?
“It's quite simple. Ikea, Apple, you name it, all companies are leaving. We must make a statement and don't want to be associated with a country run by war criminals, who are trying to completely destroy a democratic, peaceful country. We are all advocating for human rights, but what do we do? Especially for our incomes, we have to stop our deliveries right now. I am not saying that we should never deliver again, but we do now.”

Do you feel supported in your call?
"Absolutely not. Colleagues and trade association Anthos are still acting very cautiously, while fast action is important.”

Who do you feel supported by?
“A number of fellow exporters also say: 'this is really not okay'. A large tree nursery director has also stopped deliveries to Russia. And a company like Vitro Flora, which has taken over Gebr. Alkemade in the Netherlands, has also said they are no longer doing any business with Russia. As a result, they will soon have to throw away starting material from perennials.”

What do you think of growers who do deliver to Russia?
“I think that's selfish. A number of colleagues still deliver as much as possible, they think it is cool to quickly send another truck to Russia. We stopped immediately and still have tens of thousands of euros worth of trade for Russian customers. So this is really going to cost us money now. But the long term is more important.

Some people will say: You may have more interests in Ukraine than in Russia, that's why you are doing this.
"No, our revenue in Russia is much higher than in Ukraine."

How will you convince other tree growers?
“Through the press, our newsletter to 2,000 customers, and by telling as many people as possible what is happening in Ukraine. There is also a statement on our website.”

Some might say: the Russians we deliver to can't do anything about it, can they?
“Nine out of ten Russians can't help it. But the people of Russia are our only hope of putting enough pressure on Russia to get Putin out. A joint boycott of all economic activity can move the population, our sector must also do what it can in this."

What do you hear from Ukraine?
“I am no longer in contact with more and more customers. Perhaps there is no power, in the worst case it is much worse. Our boycott is also a huge statement of support for Ukraine.” <