The root cause—it’s historical
At one of our big greenhouse shows, an industry expert gave a talk that could have been directly addressing the issues facing Hines and other troubled green businesses. I’ve excerpted it for you here:
“… The talk among greenhouse operators constantly harps on the same basic complaint that we just aren’t making any money, or we aren’t making enough money … Wholesale and retail prices for flowers and plants haven’t gone up appreciably in the last 10 years. And yet the costs of operating a greenhouse have risen steadily.
“… I do very strongly believe that the reasons we aren’t making money in flower growing these days are business reasons and not because we don’t use the right fertilizers or water enough.
“ Look around among your flower-growing acquaintances. You know pretty well who is making money and who isn’t. There ARE people in this business making money. There ARE people in this business going broke. What’s the difference?
“They don’t follow the simple basic rules of successful business operations.”
Who said this?
George K. Ball, one of the sons of George J. Ball, in the December 1952 GrowerTalks—58 years ago! And yet the message remains timeless.
Which means one of two things: either the challenges facing our industry will continue to be the same no matter how much time passes, or in 58 years we haven’t learned a darned thing!