8 September 2022
The IGCA 2022 Congress was held late August in Amsterdam. Over 220 delegates from 17 countries visited our hometown to celebrate green innovation. Are you curious about the trip, key-take aways and garden centres we visited?
In this blog, we give you insights into the best moments of this annual congress.
Garden Connect Dinner Cruise
The unofficial start of the IGCA Congress was on Saturday evening. The Garden Connect Dinner Cruise was visited by over 110 people from 11 countries and took us over the IJ-river, straight to the Markermeer.
The Dinner Cruise was hosted by us to celebrate our 20th Anniversary and since many of our overseas customers were already in Amsterdam, it was a good moment to have a party!
Sunday: Youth Tour
On Sunday afternoon, the traditional Youth Tour took place. Edwin, one of the founders of Garden Connect, was joined by Jeroen Smiemans and Corina de Boer to take 25 young delegates to the centre of Amsterdam.
After lunch, everyone enjoyed the walk through the heart of the city with all its (shabby) highlights, including a beer at the Old Sailor.
10 Garden centres in 5 days
During the Congress, we visited 10 garden centres in just 5 days. The other days were focussed on Floriade and a retail tour in & around Amsterdam. Among the centres visited were some very special customers of ours.
On Tuesday, we went to the South of the country to visit Tuincentrum Daniels and Tuincentrum Schmitz. First of all, they are uniquely located next to each other, as you can see:
Both centres are members of the same buying group, Garden Retail Services, and yes, we serve both of them as well. In fact, Tuincentrum Daniels was our first customer 20 years ago!
Another garden centre visited was Coppelmans in Nuenen. The Coppelmans family owns 8 garden centres in the south of the country. Owner Patrick welcomed us in his newly built garden centre with a lunch in his restaurant. The award winning Christmas show wasn’t open yet, but a sneak peak was highly appreciated.
Coppelmans was our second customer and have been with us since 2003. Other centres visited included De Bosrand, Vechtweelde, Leurs, Huiting, Abbing and Intratuin Barneveld and Intratuin Amsterdam.
Other visits took us to ELHO, Schooneveld Breeding, Koppert Cress, Ter Laak Orchids, the Rijksmuseum and This is Holland.
Thursday night, Garden Connect provided dinner at the soon-to-be world-famous Kanarieclub. Located in the western part of the city in an old tram depot, delegates enjoyed snacks & bites as well as the Crazy Piano singer, who made sure everyone joined the dancefloor.
The IGCA 2022 app played a vital role during the congress. During the week, delegates were able to find all relevant information about the trip on the app:
- Last-minute updates
The app was even used by people who weren’t able to attend the congress but who wanted to stay up to date about the activities happening in Amsterdam!
Every morning, there was an optional presentation about topics that matter to the industry. GFK and Intratuin gave a presentation about e-commerce & trends. Brenda Horstra explained how Climate Squares can be used to help customers to make more sustainable purchase decisions. Mud Jeans showed how jeans can become more sustainable. Niek Roozen took the time to explain the ideas behind the Floriade.
During the week, 5 buses were used to drive around and every bus had two bus captains. Edwin of Garden Connect and Brenda of Tuinbranche Nederland were captains of the purple bus, joined by delegates from Australia, South Africa, France and the Netherlands.
IGCA 2023 in Italy
After the first congress in 3 years time, IGCA will move from Amsterdam to Italy! IGCA 2023 will be hosted by the Italian Garden Centre Assocation and is located in & around Milan.
This article is written by:Edwin Meijer
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