“It is great to be able to contribute to a better food supply for the world”

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Maike Janssen, Greenhouse Technician

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My job is a nice combination of ‘green fingers’, being practical and doing organizational work. Five years ago I started at Solynta as a Greenhouse Technician. Before that I worked as a phytopathology technician at a vegetable breeding company. I actually ended up in plant cultivation by accident, I did a secondary vocational education in Transport, but I like working with plants so much that I don't want anything else.

After five years, I am still far from tired of my work, but my position has also developed. I now also supervise colleagues in their work and manage the team, and I am increasingly focusing on training new colleagues. I like that, that's how I develop myself. With courses, but especially in practice. It’s a way of learning that suits me.

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I spend a large part of my time in the greenhouse, in addition I also work in the lab and sometimes some office work. What my days look like depends on what stage of cultivation we are in at that moment, my work develops along with the plants. The cycle starts with sowing, growing, preparing for crossing and then the crossing itself. Then we harvest the seeds, including everything that comes with it, examine them in the lab, and then the cycle starts all over again.

Working together as a team with a common goal
It is precisely that variety that makes it so much fun, and that we work together with a pleasant team for one goal. The realization that we are working on a better food supply for the world, a structural solution, contributes enormously to this. You don’t only work for yourself, but you also really contribute something to others. When I see the berries grow on the plant two weeks after crossing, as a sign that the crossing has been successful, it gives me a kick. We did it again.

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