Maïscultuur in Nederland | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online
Volume 5, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 2468-2187
  • E-ISSN: 2468-2195


Maize cultivation in the Netherlands

Columbus introduced maize in Spain at the end of the 15th century. At the end of 16th century, maize reached the Netherlands. However, the Dutch climate was not favorable enough to have the crop matured. Therefore, for a long time maize cultivation remained limited for study and observation. The Netherlands has not built up an old maize culture. On the other hand, Spanish and Portuguese farmers already cultivated plenty of maize in 1520. For the purpose of intensive livestock farming, the Netherlands started importing maize from America around 1850. After World War I, trade started again, but also research into the breeding of maize in order to make the Netherlands less dependent on foreign countries. After The Second World War, some farmers began to grow small-scale maize. However, it took until around 1975 before cultivation takes place on a large scale and a practical way of storage at farms has been developed. At present, maize cultivation is the largest crop in the Netherlands with over 216,000 hectares. This has led to a sharp change in the image of the historic arable landscape in 50 years.


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