Avebe

Avebe is a cooperative of starch-potato growers focused on the market. Traditionally we only focused on extracting starch from potatoes. However, by developing innovative methods we now also extract proteins from potatoes that are intended for the food industry. But there is more…. To us a potato is a source of opportunities with even more ingredients that can be turned into value. In other words, if it’s in there, we’ll extract it!

TRANSPARANCY THE KEY FOR

SUCCESSFUL COOPERATION

On 1 November, Marijke Folkers-in 't Hout was appointed chairman of
the Supervisory Board of Avebe. Together with the chairman of the board, Bert Jansen, she talks about the ambitions and developments at Avebe.

Ambition and transparency are the key points when you ask Marijke Folkers about her role as chairman of the Supervisory Board (SB). In November 2018, she succeeded Hans Hoekman, who left after more than 25 years of board work for the cooperative. An eventful time for the new chairman. “I set the bar high and I just want to get things right the first time”, says Marijke. “I appreciated the fact that the guidance was very good and I am grateful to Hans and the people around me for that.”

New generation
“I stand for my cause and am hard on the content and easy on the person”, is Marijke's first response when it comes to her personal contribution. But according to Bert Jansen, there's more to it than that. According to him, a new generation has also taken office with this chairman. “Our members may all be starch potato growers, but their companies are often at very different stages. Are you growing or phasing out, or are you the successor who has just taken over the company? Each phase calls for a different way of thinking, which makes a good balance important.” Marijke agrees. Not long ago she herself invested heavily to be able to take over the company from her father. “For me, this continuity is really very important. You could almost call it my intrinsic motivation: in 20 years' time there should still be a healthy and vital Avebe.” This calls for Supervisory Board members to have an independent position; they must be able to keep the broader interest in mind. It's primarily a matter of the interests of members, which are translated into a good price. Marijke: “You want the cooperative to be able to continue to provide a good return for its members in the future. That's why you should always consider the impact of each decision. The impact on the mix of the members, on the employees, but also on the environment and the region.” 

Transparancy
For the two chairpersons, transparency forms the basis of the cooperation between the Board of Directors and the Supervisory Board. Bert: “I always set out to be transparent in my role. Towards our members, but also the Works Council and employees, for example. And that principle certainly applies to the Supervisory Board. They need to know what we're doing, what's going well and what's not going well. Of course, that's not always easy, but it's important.” All subjects and facets of the company are discussed. This is also the experience of Marijke Folkers: “To me, transparent, open and honest are really key words in the cooperation. Just tell us how it is, even if you don't like it at that time. That prevents people from playing games. As a Supervisory Board, you really need to be able to see the whole company.”


No performance without a relationship
When you talk to Marijke about her ambitions, you soon discover that connecting is the key word. Her main concern is the connection between employees and members. “There's no performance without a relationship. We must be even more able to have a good conversation together. That way we can play a relevant role for each other.” She also touches on themes such as sustainability. The farm appears to be under a magnifying glass and is confronted with concepts such as smart farming and CO2 reduction. According to the new chairman, the cooperative has a role to play here. “How, for example, can you be successful, achieve a good return, whilst using less chemical additives? This is something that members of Avebe and employees must achieve together. Everyone has to do their bit, no matter where you work or live.”

Sustainability in the field
That's not to say that Avebe wants to take the entrepreneur's place, adds Bert Jansen: “The companies have a lot to deal with, from the government and from customers. Avebe can play a role in this, by translating these signals to the needs of the farm. But that always means guiding, not dictating.” This vision is clearly expressed in Avebe's strategy, which refers to sustainability in the field. For Avebe this is a relatively new approach. It led to a lot of discussion during the development of the strategy. This is no longer the case. “It's about a joint effort. Of course, opinions will always be divided, but you notice that there are already members who want to discuss the CO2 reduction and crop protection products together. They want to know what role Avebe can play for them, for example with new breeds of Averis.” According to Bert Jansen, the Optimeel crop optimisation programme plays an important role here. “We present ourselves in the market as a chain, which is also how the outside world sees us. And rightly so. But it also means that we have a role to play here.” 

Our own strength
For the coming period, good cooperation will remain a priority. Both chairpersons will be keeping each other on their toes and also have a clear message for each other. Marijke: “As an organisation, you really have to keep your feet on the ground. Doing what you say and saying what you do is a culture that we as Avebe should cherish. Always rely on your own strength.” Bert: “I've been working for cooperatives for a long time and it's a fact that the shareholders are stable. They understand the strategy, agree with it, it's really focused on the long term. The Supervisory Board of Avebe is characterized by a nice balance of gut feeling and knowledge. Gut feeling with the grass roots and knowledge of other companies. It's striking that the commitment goes beyond the strictly formal, but the tasks are always clearly defined. That's something that's well done at Avebe and that you have to keep an eye on.” 

MARIJKE FOLKERS - IN 'T HOUT (35)

Since 2014, Marijke Folkers and her brother are owners of a mixed pig, chicken and arable farming in Veendam. She runs this company together with her husband, brother, sister-in-law and employees. Prior to the takeover, Marijke worked for several years in the business community. She joined the Supervisory Board in December 2016. She was appointed chairman at the meeting of the Supervisory Board on 1 November 2018. Marijke is the mother of two children.

SUPERVISORY
BOARD

The Supervisory Board of Avebe consists of nine members, five of whom are members of the cooperative. The Board supervises the cooperative's management and policy. It is also responsible for the remuneration and appointment of board members and approving the budgets. The Supervisory Board members are appointed by the Members Council and elects a chairman from among its members. In addition to its formal role, the Supervisory Board also provides solicited and unsolicited advice on the cooperative's policy.

SUPERVISORY BOARD AND BOARD OF DIRECTORS:

BACK (STANDING) FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:
LENNART VAN DER REE (SECRETARY) MARTIN MŌLLERING | 
HANS-WILHELM GIERE | ROB VAN LAERHOVEN

IN THE MIDDLE FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:
KASPER DE GRAAF | JOHAN EMMENS |  ROBERT SMITH | BERT JANSEN

IN FRONT FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:
MAGDA VEENENDAAL | PETER POORTINGA | DIRK KLOOSTERBOER
MARIJKE FOLKERS-IN 'T HOUT

TRANSPARANCY THE KEY FOR

SUCCESSFUL COOPERATION

On 1 November, Marijke Folkers-in 't Hout was appointed chairman of the Supervisory Board of Avebe. Together with the chairman of the board, Bert Jansen, she talks about the ambitions and developments at Avebe.

Ambition and transparency are the key points when you ask Marijke Folkers about her role as chairman of the Supervisory Board (SB). In November 2018, she succeeded Hans Hoekman, who left after more than 25 years of board work for the cooperative. An eventful time for the new chairman. “I set the bar high and I just want to get things right the first time”, says Marijke. “I appreciated the fact that the guidance was very good and I am grateful to Hans and the people around me for that.”

New generation
“I stand for my cause and am hard on the content and easy on the person”, is Marijke's first response when it comes to her personal contribution. But according to Bert Jansen, there's more to it than that. According to him, a new generation has also taken office with this chairman. “Our members may all be starch potato growers, but their companies are often at very different stages. Are you growing or phasing out, or are you the successor who has just taken over the company? Each phase calls for a different way of thinking, which makes a good balance important.” Marijke agrees. Not long ago she herself invested heavily to be able to take over the company from her father. “For me, this continuity is really very important. You could almost call it my intrinsic motivation: in 20 years' time there should still be a healthy and vital Avebe.” This calls for Supervisory Board members to have an independent position; they must be able to keep the broader interest in mind. It's primarily a matter of the interests of members, which are translated into a good price. Marijke: “You want the cooperative to be able to continue to provide a good return for its members in the future. That's why you should always consider the impact of each decision. The impact on the mix of the members, on the employees, but also on the environment and the region.” 

Transparancy
For the two chairpersons, transparency forms the basis of the cooperation between the Board of Directors and the Supervisory Board. Bert: “I always set out to be transparent in my role. Towards our members, but also the Works Council and employees, for example. And that principle certainly applies to the Supervisory Board. They need to know what we're doing, what's going well and what's not going well. Of course, that's not always easy, but it's important.” All subjects and facets of the company are discussed. This is also the experience of Marijke Folkers: “To me, transparent, open and honest are really key words in the cooperation. Just tell us how it is, even if you don't like it at that time. That prevents people from playing games. As a Supervisory Board, you really need to be able to see the whole company.”

No performance without a relationship
When you talk to Marijke about her ambitions, you soon discover that connecting is the key word. Her main concern is the connection between employees and members. “There's no performance without a relationship. We must be even more able to have a good conversation together. That way we can play a relevant role for each other.” She also touches on themes such as sustainability. The farm appears to be under a magnifying glass and is confronted with concepts such as smart farming and CO2 reduction. According to the new chairman, the cooperative has a role to play here. “How, for example, can you be successful, achieve a good return, whilst using less chemical additives? This is something that members of Avebe and employees must achieve together. Everyone has to do their bit, no matter where you work or live.”


Sustainability in the field
That's not to say that Avebe wants to take the entrepreneur's place, adds Bert Jansen: “The companies have a lot to deal with, from the government and from customers. Avebe can play a role in this, by translating these signals to the needs of the farm. But that always means guiding, not dictating.” This vision is clearly expressed in Avebe's strategy, which refers to sustainability in the field. For Avebe this is a relatively new approach. It led to a lot of discussion during the development of the strategy. This is no longer the case. “It's about a joint effort. Of course, opinions will always be divided, but you notice that there are already members who want to discuss the CO2 reduction and crop protection products together. They want to know what role Avebe can play for them, for example with new breeds of Averis.” According to Bert Jansen, the Optimeel crop optimisation programme plays an important role here. “We present ourselves in the market as a chain, which is also how the outside world sees us. And rightly so. But it also means that we have a role to play here.” 

Our own strength
For the coming period, good cooperation will remain a priority. Both chairpersons will be keeping each other on their toes and also have a clear message for each other. Marijke: “As an organisation, you really have to keep your feet on the ground. Doing what you say and saying what you do is a culture that we as Avebe should cherish. Always rely on your own strength.” Bert: “I've been working for cooperatives for a long time and it's a fact that the shareholders are stable. They understand the strategy, agree with it, it's really focused on the long term. The Supervisory Board of Avebe is characterized by a nice balance of gut feeling and knowledge. Gut feeling with the grass roots and knowledge of other companies. It's striking that the commitment goes beyond the strictly formal, but the tasks are always clearly defined. That's something that's well done at Avebe and that you have to keep an eye on.” 

MARIJKE FOLKERS - IN 'T HOUT (35)

Since 2014, Marijke Folkers and her brother are owners of a mixed pig, chicken and arable farming in Veendam. She runs this company together with her husband, brother, sister-in-law and employees. Prior to the takeover, Marijke worked for several years in the business community. She joined the Supervisory Board in December 2016. She was appointed chairman at the meeting of the Supervisory Board on 1 November 2018. Marijke is the mother of two children.

SUPERVISORY
BOARD

The Supervisory Board of Avebe consists of nine members, five of whom are members of the cooperative. The Board supervises the cooperative's management and policy. It is also responsible for the remuneration and appointment of board members and approving the budgets. The Supervisory Board members are appointed by the Members Council and elects a chairman from among its members. In addition to its formal role, the Supervisory Board also provides solicited and unsolicited advice on the cooperative's policy.

SUPERVISORY BOARD AND BOARD OF DIRECTORS:

BACK (STANDING) FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:
LENNART VAN DER REE (SECRETARY) MARTIN MŌLLERING | 
HANS-WILHELM GIERE | 
ROB VAN LAERHOVEN

IN THE MIDDLE FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:
KASPER DE GRAAF | JOHAN EMMENS |  ROBERT SMITH | BERT JANSEN

IN FRONT FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:
MAGDA VEENENDAAL | PETER POORTINGA | DIRK KLOOSTERBOER
MARIJKE FOLKERS-IN 'T HOUT