close to farmers
Farming insider: René Vermue, Netherlands
Born and raised on his family´s farm, René Vermue developed a passion for farming at a very early age. Having gained a degree in agriculture, he now lives with his wife Carolien and their three children Merel, Jasper and Thijs on the farm his family have owned for generations in the Dutch village of Arendskerke. When he´s not out and about in the fields, he likes to expend his energy on a mountain bike or out hunting.
Family-owned: since 1911. The farm is located in Zeeland province
Farm size: 50 hectares
Cultivated crops: Sugar beet, sweetcorn, onions, grass seed, catch crops
Features Buildings and cultivation dating back more than 1,000 years
Tradition Every year the farm begins its onion harvest on René Vermue´s birthday, June 22. The variety cultivated is Troy.
Team spirit and reliability are hugely important in both my personal life and my working life – be it with colleagues, employees, or other farmers.
Why did you decide to become a farmer – and can you picture yourself doing anything?
The way of life, this feeling of freedom – I would never have wanted to do anything else, and the fact that we produce foodstuffs as a result of it all makes it the ideal combination. Sitting in an office for 40 hours a week wouldn't suit me at all. Being a farmer is my way of life, my passion.
What do you associate with independence?
Independence means a great deal to me. With all the state-imposed rules and regulations, it's not as simple as it used to be, but we can choose which crops we want to grow and can sell to anyone who is interested. I’m able to use my time as I see fit, doing what I want when I want. That's what independence and freedom are all about!
How important are respect and appreciation for you, both in your personal and your working life?
Having respect for one another is a value that's hugely important to me – but that also includes having respect for plants and the foodstuffs we produce from them. An appreciation of what we do and our wholeness with nature!
How do you approach innovations and new technologies?
I'm very interested in them. I go to study group meetings, attend exhibitions and field days, and apply the theory in practice where and when I can. I'm always thinking about new and creative solutions.
On the road worldwide. Always closeby.
All farmers have their own character - which is reflected in their way of life, philosophy and the form of farming and livestock breeding. We visited our farmers around the world and wanted to know what makes them successful, what they stand for and what challenges they have to face. A journey across five continents.