He has an area of conventional varieties of around 30 hectares. "We are switching to organic with six hectares. We have been working towards this for years, we were already on our way to organics in the regular cultivation. For instance, we used manure and had experience with certain crop protection agents. This still doesn't make you an organic grower, not by a long shot." For now Jacco is sticking to six hectares. "We won't switch fully yet, the risks are very high. There is less harvest certainty and less harvest in organics. You also can't store the products for as long. It's all part of it. But it's very satisfying and there is a rising demand for it. As far as sales are concerned it is harder to find buyers in the intermediate period. Real organic fans want organic, but there is a market for those intermediate products. As long as you give them a story."
Jacco on the left with Redlove, one of the apple varieties that he grows.
Difference in price
There is quite a difference in price between organic and conventional. "There has to be, due to the extra labour and time spent. So far, the cultivation of organic fruit is progressing by trial and error for Jacco. "I hope to have mastered it in a few years. It's good to be conscious of it already as a grower, that there will be more demand for organic and residue free in the future. And you're better to start yourself, rather than being forced. Yet I don't expect all growers to switch, it's not for everyone. You sometimes have to help out in the orchard on a Sunday afternoon."
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