About the TREE CENTRE OPHEUSDEN Association
Strength in numbers! It was under this motto that four years ago, a start was made on drawing up an inventory on how the three existing associations (Beurs-Kring-Boomteeltstudieclub Opheusden) might be able to work together.
On 2 March 2015, the merger of these three associations in Opheusden was complete. Tree Centre Opheusden is an association whose members are active tree growers based in and around Opheusden. Its members have decision-making power at all times.
Substantive issues (i.e. decisions) must be submitted to the general meeting of members. In addition, the Supervisory Board and the Daily Board operate within the structure of the association.
Purpose of the TCO:
“The promotion of arboricultural crops, the representation of its members’ interests, in the broadest sense, and the promotion of knowledge transfer and/or innovation.”
Structure of the association
The association has a structure in which the Daily Board plays a pivotal role.
Among other things, it carries out all administrative and financial tasks. All correspondence, questions, tips and recommendations are first sent to the Daily Board. The Daily Board handles matters that can be dealt with immediately, whereas other matters are referred to the relevant working group.
The Supervisory Board has a monitoring, supervisory and advisory role. The Supervisory Board is an independent body within the association. It ensures that the Daily Board carries out its duties appropriately. A number of specific examples: verifying compliance with the financial policy plan, appointing Daily Board directors and supervising whether it is carrying out all this in the interests of the association.
The assembly aims to represent tree nursery organisations of different sizes. In addition, the Supervisory Board is buttressed by experienced directors who work outside the tree nursery sector.
The Advocacy Working Group identifies opportunities or restrictions with regard to policy from governments.
Promotion & Trade
The objective of the Promotion & Trade Working Group is to stimulate sales and promote the TCO.
Knowledge and study
The aim of the Boomteeltstudieclub (Tree Cultivation Study Club) is to promote the transfer of knowledge and to identify current topics.
Research and innovation
The aim of the working group on innovation is to promote innovation and ongoing development.
Where a small organisation of tree growers can be big
Kees van Rooijen, Chair
When viewed nationally, with its small membership of 160 members, the TCO is a small association; however, the Betuwe growers are used to solving their own problems and are fervently attached to their independence. With a large number of volunteers in the TCO working groups, the organisation is capable of achieving a great deal. The EXPO is a good example of this. The four TCO workgroups form the cylinders of the engine block. The active study club is responsible for propagating knowledge, and with its website, press releases and newsletters, TCO raises the international reputation of the avenue tree centre.
The joining of forces in the Laanboompact (Avenue Tree Pact)
TCO has been working with local authorities and industry representatives in the Laanboompact (Avenue Tree Pact) in the Gelderland river area for ten years. The short lines of communication with councils and provinces ensure mutual understanding and an efficient decision-making process. This has led to the establishment of the Agro Business Centre, a 13 ha business park set up especially for the services supporting the avenue tree nursery sector. Included in the plan for the centre is an Avenue Tree House and a show garden with international appeal.
Impact on policy in Brussels and The Hague
TCO is keen to collaborate with Anthos, the association of bulb and tree growers and with the LTO’s Avenue and Ornamental Trees Culture Group. Both national organisations ensure that tree growers have access to domestic and international policy. The members identify the bottlenecks in their nurseries and the TCO working groups turn them into project ideas, ensuring optimal use of the budgets available in the sector.
By joining forces, the tree growers have been able to achieve a great deal. The trees website where all growers put their stock on is a medium from which everyone can reap the benefits. It provides a quick insight into where two-way trade is being conducted. Many large organisations look admiringly at TCO’s level of organisation and its decisiveness. TCO’s engine sets the pace and its members provide the fuel.
Kees van Rooijen, Chair of the TCO Daily Board
Kees van Rooijen
06-53 72 83 46
06-53 68 76 84
Kees van Schenkhoff
06-21 65 36 33
+316 – 24948191