♦ “We would very much like to set up a boarding house sometime, especially since this business is a kind of escape from work.”
In the Săbăreni district of Giurgiu province, located about 20 kilometers from Bucharest, Ioana Ivan, a company that develops artificial intelligence robots, with her husband, who works in a company that distributes and assembles parts for machines and for heavy machinery, invested in 2017 in a crop Lavender covering nearly 1000 square meters.
“It started with a few lavender bushes I saw on one of my business trips in 2006 to Ireland. On the way to the office I saw lavender bushes in the courtyards in front of typical English homes, and at that moment I thought that in the future, when I own my land, I will definitely plant lavender. Ioana Evan, co-founder of Lavender Yarn at ZF show Agropower, a project supported by Banca Transilvania, said.
The name of the business comes from Ioana Evan’s initial desire to have at least a few strands of lavender that she grows.
Five years ago, Ivan’s family invested 2,000 lei to buy cuttings and the entrepreneur admits she was able to pay off the investment very quickly, noting that it’s a profitable crop as long as you know how to cash in. “At the time of making the decision, my husband and I were helped by the experience we had with the service and the fact that we had found a suitable marketing niche for our profile.”
“A lot of people start thinking about profit and consider that it’s not a plant that requires work, but you have to do a very good study before you see what the market is and how they can sell your products, because in the end you can’t grow it’s really difficult because of the beauty of the plants only,” explained Ioana Evan. And without a base in terms of human resources and the market.
She added that there are a lot of farmers who abandon and destroy crops or sell them because they do not know how to grow and complain about leaving lavender flowers and processed products for them. “If you start with a large area, then the chances of success are lower to quickly tap into, if you do not have pre-concluded contracts and very clear opportunities for monetization.”
Ioana Evan says that in the case of her small family business, the first challenge was the improper preparation of the land, meaning they had no flat and no sloping surface, as many farmers in the western region did, so they lost nearly half of their They planted it the first year and started again the following fall. “Our culture is now mature and complete. I have learned that standing water is the enemy of lavender, because it is not a water loving plant.”
Lavender Yarn also makes full use of flower and flower products, such as cosmetics, floral water, soap, product lip balm, or lavender essential oil, which you get by going to a distillery, “because we don’t have it. That our surface It is relatively small and it would not be profitable to purchase a distillate system.” The products are mainly exploited in detail, through social media.
“We would very much like to do a boarding house sometime, especially since this job is a kind of escape from work and I’ve told everyone who asks me how hard it is to get a slap in the face and have a comfortable mind, rather than burdening myself with everything that comes with work In a multinational company, where it takes a lot, even if you do not make physical effort,” Iwana Evan also said.
She added that so far many people from Bucharest visited the lavender field, and last summer there were more than 100 visitors. “A lot of people who just want to visit the lavender field or take pictures come from Bucharest, they are people who don’t want to go to Timis or Cluj to see the lavender fields.”
The acreage planted with lavender has grown from year to year in Romania, so that a decade after the first plantations appeared nationwide today, the local lavender fields are similar to those in Provence and Veliko Tarnavo, with France and Bulgaria being the largest producers of lavender oil in the world, and among the important growers of This agricultural area is Romania, Italy, Spain, Serbia and Hungary.