A family of entrepreneurs

As a family business proud to bear the designation “Royal”, long-term relationships and continuity are extremely important to us. This not only applies to our staff but also to our customers and our partners in the supply chain. We combine the expertise we have built up over more than 150 years with our in-depth understanding of the market, ensuring our developments remain innovative and relevant at all times.

  1. Royal van Zanten in

    1862

    The early days

    The year in which a small company starts cultivating bulbs alongside potatoes on the “Zanderij van Six”. The roots of its success lie in the sandy soils around Hillegom. Gerrit Veldhuyzen van Zanten has a visionary outlook, convinced that bulbs have a promising future on the world market. In 1897 he buys the company on Loosterweg ... and that’s still where we’re based today.

  2. Royal van Zanten in

    1900

    Bulb acreage expands

    Gerrit steps back and sons Jan and Gerrit Jr continue the business as Gebroeders Van Zanten. In 1912 the business expands by more than 60 ha, with new plots of land, warehouses and offices. Jan’s and Gerrit’s four sons join the business in 1926 at the age of 25 and by 1937 the company has its ninth family-member director!

  3. Royal van Zanten in

    1959

    Enter the Chrysanthemum

    The Chrysanthemum is introduced into the Netherlands as a year-round product by Kees Veldhuyzen van Zanten in a wholly-owned subsidiary. Chrysanthemums start to gain momentum alongside bulbs. The 1960s and 1970s see new greenhouses being built for producing cuttings, and breeding also begins to bear fruit.

  4. Royal van Zanten in

    1983

    International succes

    In addition to a new company in Aalsmeer focusing exclusively on raising Alstroemeria, bulbs, plants and cuttings are exported to more than 20 countries in both the northern and southern hemispheres.

  5. Royal van Zanten in

    1991

    Koninklijke Van Zanten

    Gebroeders van Zanten and Van Zanten Chrysanthemum are brought together under the new name Koninklijke Van Zanten and immediately expand with a 16,000 m² greenhouse for growing, rooting and conducting research on Alstroemeria varieties. In 1993 the first stake is driven in Hillegom for a state-of-the-art treatment and processing complex for flower bulbs.

  6. Royal van Zanten in

    1997

    Growth and acquisitions

    Expansion and acquisitions follow one after the other until the end of the 1990s. Production of Chrysanthemum cuttings also gets under way in South Africa, and Koninklijke Van Zanten is ranked the 82nd fastest growing company in the Elsevier Top 100 ranking of family companies.

  7. Royal van Zanten in

    2001

    Royal Van Zanten

    No fewer than 31 corporate designs and trade names disappear and Royal Van Zanten is proudly launched as the new brand name. Icons representing development, growth and flourishing - and, indirectly, bulbs, cuttings and flowers – are introduced to make the organisation instantly recognisable. Arie Veldhuyzen van Zanten takes over as general manager a year later.

  8. Royal van Zanten in

    2006

    Our own varieties

    With the acquisition of Cleangrow and later Sunfield and CBA, we start marketing Chrysanthemum varieties on an exclusive basis. A year earlier, we shut down our Cyclamen, Osteospermum and Impatiens activities to focus on cut Chrysanthemum, pot Chrysanthemum,, Aster, Celosia and Multiflora mums under the Van Zanten Cuttings operating company.

  9. Royal van Zanten in

    2009

    Product portfolio expands

    We continue to identify opportunities in developing new products or expanding our product range, amply demonstrated by the acquisition of the Bouvardia range from John de Jong. A product with worldwide market opportunities adds value to the portfolio.

  10. Royal van Zanten in

    2016

    More than 150 years of passion

    Now, 150 years later, we still bear the designation “Royal” with due pride. Royal Van Zanten is still active in Europe and South America and is also opening up new markets in China, India, Malaysia and Ethiopia. So we are in constant touch with our international growers, distributors and partners to enable us to launch and market the very best varieties worldwide.

A sustainable partner

With our outstanding product concepts that meet the needs of the market and our high-quality range of pot plants, cut flowers and bulbs, we are a sustainable partner to our growers, our agents and our partners in the supply chain.

More about our products

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Working at Royal Van Zanten

“When it comes to innovations in cultivation and breeding, you can’t do better than Royal Van Zanten. We make sure we understand your needs and treat your product with care and attention.”

Sjoukje Heimovaara, Chief Executive Officer

“Growers are increasingly having to contend with diseases and pests as a result of changes in production methods or the banning of environmentally hazardous pesticides. By responding promptly to new diseases, I have been able to get to grips more easily with troublesome chrysanthemum and lily viruses."

Bas Brandwagt, Phytopathologist

“At our lab in Rijsenhout I work with a team of researchers on improving varieties by means of quality controls, new germination techniques and DNA research.”

Wim Rook, Head of Laboratory

“The great thing about working for Royal Van Zanten is that I get the chance to bring together the interests of the growers, the trade and the breeders, and everyone forms part of the development and the sales process. Working together in the supply chain is hugely important for the future.”

Jeroen Meeder, Area Export Manager Pot plants

“Royal Van Zanten has given me the opportunity to take courses and qualify as a breeder. I’ve been a breeder for five years now and I’m beginning to see the first results of my labour... and I’m very proud of them."

Dave Geerlings, Potchrysanthemum Breeder

“I am proud of our new pot Bouvardia – an elegant plant from our own ‘breeding kitchen’ with lots of ornamental qualities. Developed in conjunction with our partner grower, this pot plant is now available in four separate colours.”

Harry van Straaten, Team Leader, Breeding

“Breeding is teamwork, and besides assessing selections and choosing varieties that go on to win awards, I get to travel between the Netherlands, Kenya and Columbia to obtain the best results for our Alstroemeria range.”

Wim Haytink, Alstroemeria Breeder

“I really enjoy working for Royal Van Zanten because of the many flowers and plants here. After a few years in the Gladiolus department, I have now been working in the Lily breeding department for three years. Even without specialist training, Royal Van Zanten is giving me plenty of opportunities to grow.”

Adriaan Zweemer, Assistant Breeder
Sjoukje Heimovaara, Chief Executive Officer
Bas Brandwagt, Phytopathologist
Wim Rook, Head of Laboratory
Jeroen Meeder, Area Export Manager Pot plants
Dave Geerlings, Potchrysanthemum Breeder
Harry van Straaten, Team Leader, Breeding
Wim Haytink, Alstroemeria Breeder
Adriaan Zweemer, Assistant Breeder