The dynamic horticultural production chain, covering all plants from vegetables to fruits and flowers, ensures that all horticultural products find their way from farm to fork. Through various channels, these products reach domestic and international markets.
Because the horticulture sector is built upon an intricate and complex system of actors and channels, in which each variable affects the other, decisions within the sector need to be taken with precaution and modifications must be managed and regulated by experts in the field of horticulture. Moreover, stakeholders not only have to respond to the changes brought by consumer demand, market regulations and technological advancements. They also have to deal with an ever-greater number of national and international laws and regulations, such as those governing international food quality standards. That is why horticulture chains are in constant development and always in need of optimisation.
This specialisation has been designed to help professionals develop the knowledge and skills needed to remain in the horticulture sector, adapt to changes and help stakeholders optimise their processes.
Designed to increase professionals’ ability to anticipate and exploit these developments, this programme examines each stakeholder in the chain (suppliers, farmers, processors, traders, retailers and consumers), particularly in the stages from input to processing. It also approaches the overall chain from the perspective of logistics, economics, quality control, marketing channels and information flows. This gives graduates a complete helicopter view of the horticulture sector. Students will acquire competences such as facilitating the governance of efficient and sustainable value chains, initiating innovative chain processes and projects, supporting business service entrepreneurs, developing policies, effectively communicating value chain developments and conducting applied research.
The study year is divided into a nine-month taught programme and a three-month thesis research project. During the initial teaching period, students will conduct value chain analyses, in which they will learn how to describe the organisational concepts underlying the production and supply chains and the limitation of supply-chain management in developing countries. Furthermore, students will study horticulture chains with four specialist modules and focus on their professional development. Graduates will be ready for a career in the horticulture sector.
If you are a mid-career horticulture professional in the public or private sector involved in agri-business, management or consultancy, regional development policies or projects, research or lecturing at a higher education institute, we invite you to apply for this specialisation.