Herman Herman keeps the Groenrijk garden centre neat and tidy - Case Study


Courtesy of Bramidan Balers

At the Groenrijk Garden Centre in Zuidoostbeemster business never stops. The garden centre covers an area of one and a half hectares, divided up between greenhouses and open space.

“We sell all sorts of articles for outside and inside the home,” explains Gert Jan Waterhout, the garden centre’s owner and manager. The centre attracts around a hundred thousand customers a year, who come to buy indoor and outdoor plants and flowers, pet supplies, stone, gravel, novelty and Christmas gifts, as well as furniture.

This means a correspondingly high volume of packaging materials. Mr Waterhout says; “Goods from China, in particular, often have three layers of packaging covering them. Each week we have between five and ten cubic metres of cardboard and two cubic metres of plastics. We used to dispose of all that in two containers. What did not fit, was stacked next to the containers – but of course, with just a bit of wind, it got blown all over the place. I wanted to get rid of this rubbish!”

No waste is put outside anymore
Mr Waterhout had already heard a bit about balers. He did some research on the Internet, asked for a few quotes, and finally selected the Bramidan B16, a really powerful machine. After about six weeks he and the cleaning staff, as well as the other employees, were very satisfied.

The B16 is located in the warehouse and all cardboard is immediately put into it. Plastic is first collected in big bags and then later compacted into bales. Nothing goes outside anymore. For customers ordering garden furniture it’s a blessing that the Groenrijk Garden Centre takes away the enormous quantities of packaging – this also disappears into the B16.

A baler with a nickname
Mr Waterhout takes the bales of used paper and plastic on the back of his lorry to the recycling company, which is located nearby. He is not sure yet what price he will get for these – but at least the €1,200 which he will save per year in container hire, will go back into his pocket. The machine has paid itself within five years. As Mr Waterhout puts it: “It seems to me it couldn’t be any easier!” As a curiosity the baler at the Groenrijk Garden Centre has a name. The machine has been christened Herman Herman, after the cleaner who operates the machine and says every word twice. Mr Waterhout says: “Herman thinks it’s a great machine and is enormously proud that it has been named after him. He has no problem at all operating it. It simply can’t go wrong. And most important, it has a nice yellow colour!”

About the Groenrijk Garden Centre
The garden centre, which is part of a franchise, is located on the outskirts of Zuidoostbeemster in Holland. The company was established in 1963 and sells all possible sorts of items for outside and inside the home. The departments are arranged into home (interior), home (exterior), ambience, pets, aquatics and garden furniture. The company has 14 employees.

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