PT Creations in Wijk en Aalburg once started out as a grower and line driver who went on to do ‘a few extras’, but now they produce several million arrangements a year. Depending on the season, 100 to 300 people are involved, while in the warehouse, which has up to 20,000 pallet spaces, the lorries come and go. A few months ago, a large section was added to the warehouse in neighbouring Veen, allowing production to grow into the future and also establishing a new cash & carry.
Gerben van Hemert and Jan Timmermans in the new warehouse
We take a tour of the company with sales manager Jan Timmermans and site manager Gerben van Hemert. While most trading companies are pretty much done for the day by mid-afternoon, at PT Creations, several ‘lines’ are still in operation. In recent years, but especially during the Covid years, production has increased considerably, while the range and trade in hardware has also only increased. All hardware is sourced in-house, with almost no use of middlemen. Most of the customers are delivered with four of the company’s own trucks.
One of the cold stores in the new building. The photo below shows a helicopter view.
The company is owned by Jan’s brother, Mark Timmermans. He took over from his father, Peter, and started making arrangements 19 years ago. That was something new then, in the sense that shops often did it themselves. By taking it up on a larger scale, however, considerable cost savings were possible. Mark saw that and reacted to it, while the market for arrangements grew even faster. The nursery itself (formally called PT Nurseries) also still exists, growing a range of conifers. However, the original ‘line drive’ is no longer in evidence.
View into storage. The racks can be moved to the left or right along their length.
In production, one goes through the following cycle, so to speak. In October, one starts with amaryllises, hyacinths, and (Christmas) trees. That lasts about three months, while daffodils and muscari are gradually added. Bedding plants follow in spring, rock plants rule in summer, and heather plants are popular in autumn, after which the cycle starts all over again. In between, there are, of course, theme days such as Valentine’s Day, Easter, and the various Mother’s Days.
View into the ‘old’ production area, where several dozen lines are in operation.
The main purpose of the new building is to allow for extra production when the other site is full. There are also extra cold stores, so that during peaks or for Monday – customers often order at the weekend, making Monday the busiest day of the week by default – some work can be done ahead. Finally, a new cash & carry has been realised. Even though there is less and less physical buying – in the handful of years of being at Aalsmeer, the share of internet trade grew from about 10 to 80 per cent – for customers and relations it remains a showcase. Moreover, given the volumes, it is no longer feasible to make (very) small quantities to order, but with the cash and carry the company can still continue to serve the (smaller) customers.
For more information:
4261 TV Wijk en Aalburg
Tel.: +31(0)416 69 60 33