The Schoone family, Floricultura and the Advisory Board invite the international orchid sector to nominate persons, new varieties, marketing concepts, business strategies and innovations in crop technology for the 2013 Klaas Schoone Memorial Award. This distinguished award, which will be presented for the first time next year, is a posthumous tribute to Klaas Schoone, an extraordinary orchid grower who was a highly respected pioneer in the commercial assortment of orchids, their cultivation and crop technology during his short life.
Klaas Schoone was a devoted orchid grower who died four years ago at the age of 64. He knew maybe better than anyone that good things are meant to be shared.
“Klaas was a very positive person, and we think that we should follow in his footsteps by spreading a positive message,” says Ed Meeuwissen, who with Hans Bart, Jan Post and Gerard de Wagt, is a member of the advisory board that initiated the Klaas Schoone Memorial (KSM) Award. “Klaas was not just someone with a passion for the orchid sector; he was also a man who was open to sharing what he knew. We miss someone like him today – someone who can lift the international orchid sector to a higher level – and this is where the KSM Award can help us.”
Award Is Open To All Facets of Orchid Sector
The biennial KSM Award that will be presented for the first time next year (location and date still to be determined) will accept applications from everyone and for everything involved in the orchid sector. Meeuwissen says the KSM Award is for plant breeders, propagators, growers, new varieties, or for a group of people who have developed a business plan or marketing strategy, as well as researchers who are doing pioneering work in such fields as the use of fertilisers and sustainable cultivation. “There are so many facets you could think of, and we really wouldn’t want to exclude anything or anybody. It’s our guess that there are lots of hidden treasures out there. It would be wonderful if the KSM Award could bring them to light,” Meeuwissen says.
Jury Of Experts
Candidates can apply until September 29, 2012, via the VKC’s (Permanent Judging Committee) website where it is possible to download application forms in both Dutch and English. With the VKC and Gerard de Wagt as chairman, the Klaas Schoone Memorial Award has an extremely authoritative jury. “For each of the four categories, the VKC will assess and appoint a separate group of inspectors who know the orchid sector from A to Z, whether it’s about new varieties, promotion or crop technology. We as the Advisory Board will guarantee the quality of the entries,” Meeuwissen says.
Looking Forward To International Competition
At this time, the organisation is seeking patrons who can promote the KSM Award in their own countries. By now, big names in the orchid sector have indicated their willingness to help with this international promotion of the KSM Award. Meeuwissen emphasizes that fears that only the Dutch will be involved are unfounded. “Besides the Netherlands, there are many other countries in which the orchid sector is represented, and people there say that they are honored to be allowed to bring this award to the attention of others in their own country. And I honestly have to say that I and the other members of the advisory board are very much looking forward to real international competition.”
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