Small country of the Netherlands: Famine creates a large agricultural country

  I’m planning to grow some different varieties of dahlias in my home garden this year, and now is the season to buy dahlia bulbs. So I watched videos on the Internet first, and saw a video of a British girl giving a very clear explanation. I also noticed that she was working for a website specializing in flower bulbs, so I followed the link provided by the video and boarded a British website. , selected 4 different dahlia bulbs, and one step before payment, the delivery information appeared on the website, and one line caught my attention: “All bulbs will be shipped directly from our warehouse in the Netherlands”. It turned out that this is a Dutch company, a family business specializing in flower bulbs.
  I didn’t expect to buy bulbs to go to the Netherlands, but this is actually not surprising at all. The Netherlands is a European leader in agriculture, including the production of vegetables and flowers. I used to know that the agriculture in the Netherlands is quite developed, and I was impressed by the large fields of brightly colored and rich tulips in the spring fields.
  The last time I wrote about the tomato shortage in the UK, I only learned more about Dutch farming. The article mentioned that there are large-scale closed greenhouses in southern England, where tomatoes are grown using hydroponics, and there is a complete system to control light, temperature, nutrients and carbon dioxide concentration, which is perfect. In fact, that system was learned from the Netherlands. It is an innovation of the Dutch. It has been implemented for many years and has been continuously improved. The scale is much larger than that of England.
  Sometimes I can’t help but marvel that such a small piece of land is the second largest agricultural exporter in the world. The Netherlands, like the United Kingdom, benefits from the warm North Atlantic Current. Although the latitude is high, the climate is mild. At the same time, the Netherlands has a flat terrain and fertile soil, which is suitable for agricultural production. But the North Atlantic is not the Mediterranean after all, and it does not have the superior climate conditions of Spain and Morocco. The Dutch planting industry cannot rely on the weather alone. It has grown to today’s scale, and government support has played a big role.
  The Netherlands’ desire for food security stems from a famine in the latter part of World War II. In just a few months from the end of 1944, about 20,000 Dutch people starved to death, known as the “Hunger Winter”. After World War II, the Dutch government invested heavily in agriculture. By the 1980s, the problem facing the Netherlands became a surplus of agricultural products. After several twists and turns, the Netherlands has finally embarked on a path of large-scale high-tech and sustainable development. The geographical location of the Netherlands in the center of Western Europe provides great convenience for the export of agricultural products. The United Kingdom has also benefited from Dutch agriculture and is one of the top five export destinations for Dutch agricultural products.
  The agricultural status of the Netherlands depends on its scientific research and innovation around agriculture. A report I read more than a year ago said that the Netherlands already has a large-scale greenhouse dedicated to planting bananas. Bananas are not planted in the soil, but in large trays filled with coconut palm silk, which can reduce pests and diseases. The tradition of man engaging in agricultural production by means of industrialization.
  Living in the UK, especially when there is a tomato shortage, I sometimes envy the Netherlands. British agriculture has begun to learn from the Netherlands, but although they are separated by water, the climate and geographical conditions are different after all, and the agricultural traditions are also very different. It is said that closed greenhouse planting is only suitable for southern England, and further north because of the short sunshine time in winter and lack of economic benefits. In addition, the undulating terrain in northern England is not conducive to the operation of large-scale agricultural machinery. However, I think the biggest problem may still be in the agricultural tradition. The British seem to have a natural resistance to the large-scale industrialization of the Netherlands.
  I found the warehouse video of this Dutch company on the Internet, which is where the dahlia bulbs I ordered are shipped. It is a large warehouse with various management measures such as automatic ventilation and heat preservation, which is in line with my expectations of Dutch farms. imagine. Hopefully these bulbs grown in Holland will produce beautiful flowers in Scottish soil.