Lieve Nieuwint saves flowers from the shredder and helps farmers during COVID-19

As export came to a halt during COVID-19, many tulip growers were left with their unsold stock, most of which had to go straight into the shredder. Together with a friend, former HTH student Lieve Nieuwint tried to save as many flowers as possible (and succeeded in our opinion.)

HTH alumni Lieve Nieuwint in action

Lieve Nieuwint started her studies at HTH in 2009, when it was still located in the old building in Amsterdam Zuid. “I remember the Skotel, my internship in Cape Town, and my graduation. It was all a fantastic time.” Today, Lieve is a producer in the event industry for Wunderbaum Management. Her job involves the daily management of radio DJ’s, but she also works on creative input for events, podcast series and TV formats. When faced with farmer Jos’ dilemma, Lieve intuitively used her knowledge and skills from event management and applied them to this completely different field, mobilising volunteers and selling directly to the consumer.

A small gesture of goodwill leaves a big impact on five farmers in the Amsterdam area

First, it was the tulips. Then came the gerberas, gladiolas, asparagus, peonies and sunflowers. A bunch of tulips went for € 5.50, which is more than reasonable, but didn’t deter customers who felt good about saving them from the shredder whilst also supporting local flower growers by buying their stock.

Now, three months later, over 175.000 products from five different farmers have been sold via Lieve and her team. There is no business model - this is a charity work in action.

According to Lieve, “the Van Maker naar Mokum is a nice initiative that we would like to expand. Everyone is aware of the possibility of a ‘second wave’ of COVID-19 and its effects this could have on Dutch export. If the farmers need us again, we will see what we can do! Actually, our dream is a big farmers market in Amsterdam, without the overhead costs or the expensive logistics… Just the farmers and their products.”

Lieve’s advice to students at the beginning of their professional career is:

“Be creative! There are so many opportunities offered at HTH and if you use those opportunities creativelyn then the world is your oyster!"

Lieve Nieuwint