In the next few weeks, Container Centralen will dispatch its new CC TAG5 label to all legitimate members of the pool. So that includes Waterdrinker, one of the biggest export and wholesale companies in Holland’s horticultural capital, Aalsmeer. Bert Broekhof, responsible for container administration and transport, has a lot of experience in dealing with the label. He provides some insight below on how he and his colleagues are preparing themselves for the next chapter.
Bert, for starters, please tell us something about Waterdrinker and yourself.
“More than forty years ago, our founding father, Jaap Waterdrinker, established himself as a market trader in Zaandam, north of Amsterdam. Gradually, this became a cash and carry business and later on, a wholesale export company for flowers and plants.
We can now proudly call ourselves one of Holland’s biggest worldwide exporters and wholesalers of flowers, domestic plants, and garden flora. I have worked here myself since early 1990.”
For how long have you done business with Container Centralen?
“Well, that coincides more or less with my own career. I can clearly remember the first contract. We had a grand total of forty-four containers and kept a record on a notepad!
But steadily, it all became more and more professional. The first computers, manufactured by Tulip, appropriately. The hologram stickers, as a predecessor of the first, green label. Then black, currently red and from early 2019 the transparent CC TAG5.”
How many CC containers do you currently use?
“We own all of our CC containers, some 17,000 in total. Of those, between 6,000 and 7,000 are with our customers.”
What do you use the label for?
“For our contacts throughout Europe. We decided not to use it for registering products which are on the containers. Mind you, that would be perfectly possible, using the RFID-chip.”
On the 7th of January 2019, all your containers need to be labelled. How are you going to achieve this?
“First of all, we will relocate the containers, which are here on the premises, to a separate, quiet area. We will attach the new CC TAG5 labels on to these containers in
the weekend before 7 January.
For the containers, which are on our auction number, we will bring the new tags to Flora Holland. This will ensure an up-to-date auction balance in the week of the 7th of January.
And finally, slowly but surely, the containers which are with our customers will be returned to us. We will provide these with the new CC TAG5 when they come in, i.e. on a daily basis. This final stage will take approximately half a year.”
So you will do all the labelling yourselves? Without hiring extra help?
“Yes, all by ourselves, in a team of three or four people.”
How does Waterdrinker process the new label in its administration?
“That’s actually quite simple: in our systems, we will replace the details of the current red label with those of the CC TAG5. In a new column, we will keep up with the new label, and slowly the column with the old, current labels will dry up.”
How do you inform your customers?
“We will make good use of Container Centralen’s mailing, including the little film in multiple languages. filmpje. We will send this to all customers with whom we have an outstanding balance.”
You have a lot of experience in dealing with Container Centralen’s labels. Any tips or tricks for your colleagues, which may help them to achieve a smooth transition to the new label?
“Firstly: keep it all in your own hands. I know that some companies send the new labels to their customers so that they can attach the labels. I would advise against this. It will result in losing your grip and overview.
Secondly: a new label is always a good moment for contemplation, as a company. Which customers should be supplied using CC containers, and which customers should be transferred to DC containers?
The answer to this will also help to keep container loss to a minimum. After all, as exporters, we will be presented with the bill. Therefore: customers who definitely don’t have a contract for CC containers will – for the time being – be supplied by us using unregistered DC containers.”
Source: Container Centralen