Running a successful greenhouse business requires a broad range of specialist knowledge and skills; from technical operations all the way through to HR and strategic marketing insights. Start-ups have to develop smart business plans to answer demands and to face the challenges of sustainability, climate change, biodiversity and soil quality. Not only do they need to run the day to day business in an effective way, but they also need to constant innovation to realize productivity and quality.

This requires flexible, qualified and motivated employees and managers. Human capital is the key for profit and return on investment. Research shows that having the right human capital can double the production and sales of a high-tech greenhouse.

Human Capital

Horticulture is not possible without good, qualified and motivated employees and management. A growing number of companies, however, have vacancies and are struggling to find the right people to fill them. There is a growing need for specialists in various fields, such as green production, controllers and operators, quality assurance, logistics and marketing. Investing in human capital by training and coaching pays off directly.

Making knowledge available and connecting experts is of great importance to remain innovative and gain traction for talent. It is necessary to attract qualified employees to retain the innovative power.


Dutch Sprout

Dutch Sprout is a collaboration between experienced horticulture experts and education providers. Our goal is to share high level horticultural expertise worldwide, using a unique educational approach that simultaneously mobilizes and leverages local knowledge. We are convinced that ensuring talent development is of importance to create economically resilient and sustainable local food systems.

The collaborative is the gateway to Dutch greenhouse experts that are part of the large network of partners of Dutch Sprout. The network includes organisations like Wageningen University, Inholland University of Applied Sciences, Lentiz College and Wellant College. All these organisations have direct access to specialists in breeding, seeds and young plants, greenhouse technology, marketing, logistics, trade, finance and quality control.

Dutch Sprout Greenhouse


The core task of Dutch Sprout is the development and execution of training programs. These programs are based on the educational design ‘blended learning’ and ‘action learning’. The programs are of high quality and stand out because they are tailor made and transferable for local contexts. These programs are aimed at empowering local partners to deliver and maintain high quality training according to proven Dutch learning methods. Dutch Sprout supports the development of organizations in the horticulture cluster and policymakers by creating optimum learning conditions and processes to realize long-term growth and success.

Training centres

To be able to carry out training, an up to date training centre representing the latest high-tech greenhouse setting is required. Dutch Sprout offers a service to evaluate and update local training centres. Dutch Sprout offers online office support for the training centres in order to facilitate the management of the training centres. The training centres can be positioned in a production location or on a special location near greenhouse production sites.

Modern learning strategy: Action Learning

Dutch Sprout believes that learning is most effective when it is delivered contextually, related to practice. Therefore, all our programs are developed with a focus on specific functions and jobs. They also use real life case studies relevant to the specific working environment of the students and professionals we teach. We use this approach at all levels, from greenhouse workers and supervisors through to managers, entrepreneurs and investors. To ensure a high-quality standard, we develop our programs with profiling and entrance level tests. This ensures that the programs suit the individual needs of each learner and the company he or she is working for. The learning outcomes are directly linked to the international high standards from the high-tech greenhouse business and evolve over time.


Blended Learning approach

To ensure an optimal learning experience our programs are designed as blended and practice-based training: a combination of e-learning, classroom meetings, virtual classrooms, coaching on the job and online coaching. All of our programs are designed modularly to ensure efficiency and prevent doubles.

Train the Trainer

For long-term success, local knowledge transfer and robust education systems are crucial. Therefore, ‘train the trainer’ programs are always part of our project approach. Our programs are designed in such a way that our involvement decreases over time. In our place, local companies and education partners take the lead and create a new model for growing local horticulture talent!