What does it take to keep a plant safe and healthy? Ask crop protection specialist Hassan Hadid and you'll get an extensive answer. Plants always have been the central thread in his turbulent life. "I was educated in Syria, gained job experience in Libya and developed further in the Netherlands."
"I came to the Netherlands as a refugee. I did my education in plant sciences in Syria in the area of crop protection. I used my knowledge in Libya as advisor on climate, fertilisation and crop protection at a vegetable grower. Once in the Netherlands, I wanted to work in the green sector again. I got to Schoneveld Breeding as an intern, now I manage my own division as a crop protection specialist."
Prevention and control "To summarise my work: I ensure plants stay healthy and I organise the prevention and control of diseases and pests. Most of the prevention works biologically at Schoneveld. I developed the integrated prevention, also known as integrated pest management (IPM), further within Schoneveld. We try to solve everything without chemicals, those are the last resort. Because of my experiences in Syria and Libya, I tend to know a bit more about certain pests and diseases. Sometimes I look from a slightly different angle. That brings interesting insights."
Fully biological "I'm very proud that we don't use any 'red chemicals' anymore at Schoneveld. Red chemicals means using chemicals with a big impact on the environment. I've put a lot of effort into the issue of becoming fully 'green'. We control mice with clamps instead of poison and in the greenhouses we use insects to control pests. Much healthier than spraying red chemicals. Besides that, you pay much more attention to the plant when using biological prevention. It can be quite a quest to find out what works best and that quest requires specific knowledge and foremost commitment. We received a certificate from MPS-ABC for the fact that we follow the IPM strategy. That's quite an achievement."
Healthy work environment "It's good to notice the happiness of co-workers since we use this way of prevention. When colleagues see us entering the greenhouses to scatter grains or release insects, they are always happy. That's logical to me. For our co-workers, it's much safer and healthier to work in an environment without pesticides. Schoneveld isn't only good for plants, the well-being of employees is important as well. Next to that, everybody understands it's much safer to work in a greenhouse where biological control is the only way of control."
"Colleagues are always happy when they see we scatter instead of spray. Because that means we use biological insects and chemicals instead of red chemicals."
Hygiene "To prevent is always better than to cure. That's why I'm also responsible for hygienic measures. Most of the time, the source of pests and diseases is found in bad hand hygiene or plant material from outside that infects our own plants. If there is an ill plant or there is a plague inside the greenhouses, our scouters notice in an early stage. With their findings in hand, I make a treatment plan so we gain control back as soon as possible."
Welcome "I was enthusiastic from the first moment when I found out I could work at Schoneveld. It was overwhelming at first, mainly because of the language barrier. But I felt welcome from the first moment on. For example, colleagues helped me by talking a bit slower in the beginning. I also learned a lot from them in professional matters. That's great about Schoneveld. Everybody wants the best for each other. And you can develop your own skills, just have an open attitude for it."
Classmates "Due to my education in Syria I have many international contacts. I'm proud to work in the sector I've been educated in. For many of my fellow students things haven't worked out that way. It's my dream to bring Schoneveld to a next level of IPM in the future. Using biology as much as possible. That results in stronger and more resilient crops and it has profits for colleagues as well. Nature doesn't use chemicals, why would we then?"
Join us Working at Schoneveld means working in a green environment. Working toward a sustainable and innovative result with committed colleagues. Does that suit you? Take a look at all vacancies on the vacancy page.