There will be no new edition of the world horticultural exhibition Floriade in 2032, the Dutch Horticultural Council (NTR) has announced. According to the NTR, the current form of the Floriade is outdated. With this, the Floriade ceases to exist.
The last edition of the exhibition in Almere ended with a loss of tens of millions. Earlier editions also resulted in losses for municipalities.
Since 1960, NTR has organized an edition of the exhibition every 10 years. The edition in Almere last year was the seventh. The horticultural expo received mostly negative media coverage last year, due to increasing shortages and disappointing visitor numbers.
Whistleblowers and critics told newspaper Het Parool at the beginning of this year that the event led to a loss of around 180 million euros. Until the beginning of this year, there was talk of a loss of about 100 million euros. The Floriade needed about 2.8 million visitors to break even, but it was already announced at the opening of the exhibition that the organization was counting on 2 million visitors. It eventually became about 685,000.
More expensive and riskier
According to the NTR, “organizing such a temporary event has become increasingly complex and therefore more expensive and risky”. According to the horticultural council, this makes it less attractive for municipalities or regions to organize the exhibition.
Almere’s aldermen resigned in June 2022 because of the state of affairs. The contributions of the province of Flevoland to the Floriade also increased, but the province did not want to compensate for everything. For example, the province waived the allocation of contributions from the corona fund. The Floriade BV, the company behind the Floriade, pointed to the corona crisis as an important cause of the low visitor numbers.
According to the NTR, there are now much more effective ways to ensure a good international image for Dutch horticulture. It is not yet known how the horticultural council intends to do this. The NTR says it will think about this “or longer” in the coming year.
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