The impact of Covid-19 to the GREEN Industry

The impact of Covid-19 to the GREEN Industry
Managing Director Media Concept Schweiz AG

Horticulture and the horticultural retail sector have been under a lot of stress in the past few months. In the beginning it was pure fear of existence for many companies and later came the total stress as the turnover exploded. In this article we look at some product groups that belong to the range of each garden center and would like to take a interim summary of the situation. How satisfied are production and trade a few weeks after the return of "normal life"?

Let's start with the good, old allotment garden. In the past it was withheld from many ambitious hobby gardeners and philistines. This perspective changed 10 years ago and more and more young people are concerned with nature and the garden. The waiting lists at the allotment assosiations got longer! During and after Covid-19, the inquiries grew immeasurably. The waiting list at many allotment garden associations was before the Corona circles between one and five years – now are in conurbations up to 20 years. We are observing this development not only in the German-speaking countries, but throughout Europe and the USA. This development is more than positive for our industry – especially for the sale of seeds and young plants.


Since the waiting lists are long, there are an extremely large number of "immediate beginners". You simply buy raised beds and start the garden season quickly. Never before in history have so many raised beds been sold in Germany and Switzerland. It is particularly interesting here that garden centers and hardware stores can now greet customers who were not previously "in touch" with GARTEN. Many companies are already sold out and the industry can no longer deliver.


Another facet of this development is the sharp increase in rental space for growing vegetables. All over the world, farmers or municipalities make areas available that are leased in small plots. For example, a family can use 20 square meters and grow vegetables there. Technical support and tools are also provided for the rental fee, besides the ground. All operators of such business models are currently booming. Most providers are fully booked for summer 2020.


These are just three of many examples that show that the population of many countries has found closer to nature and gardening through Covid-19. This statement can also be supported by numbers and statements. We know from many horticultural companies that the production sold out very early and that the flow of goods is now stalling. The retail trade is very satisfied and in the first five months has already exceeded the sales of the previous year. This is all the more remarkable since in many countries the shops were closed for weeks.

Covid-19 thus had a major impact on the GREEN industry. It will be exciting to see how it goes on and how the next few months will develop. We will share our opinion with you again in our blog at the end of the year.


Robert Wacker
Managing Director Media Concept Schweiz AG
Robert Wacker has been working in the green industry since 1980. For 20 years, he has been developing marketing and sales concepts for breeders, producers and retailers. As Managing Director of Media Concept Schweiz AG, he regularly writes articles for this blog.

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