ASTA’s 58th Vegetable & Flower Seed Conference Was Another Educational and Global Networking Success
- On February 21, 2019
Weathering the dual storms of a government shutdown and a year of major industry transitions, ASTA’s 58th Vegetable & Flower Seed Conference in Orlando, Florida persevered with an audience of over 900 global seed industry registrants from 37 countries and a sold-out Trading Room comprising 140 reserved company locations.
The conference featured timely and collaborative educational content, including a special session developed in partnership between ASTA, USDA and the U.S. Department of Energy on Controlled-Environment Agriculture. The General Session, which also served as the annual meeting of the ASTA Vegetable & Flower Seed Division, included presentations on consumer mega-trends by industry consultant Don Goodwin of Golden Sun Marketing, and on global trade by Bill Lane of Trade for America. The larger-than-ever Trading Room, including 28-percent international attendees, was a flurry of business appointment activity. In fact, some representatives have reported that they rely on these global appointments each year to meet their company’s annual revenue goals.
Special learning opportunities included tours of the Disney Nursery and All-America Selections trial garden, hosted by Disney’s Horticulture Team, and special communications sessions including a workshop for the Seed Ambassador Leadership Team (SALT) and a special presentation on the UC Berkeley’s CLEAR program by Becky Mackelprang, a post-doctorate scholar.
Additional key sessions included updates on ASTA’s ongoing initiatives in plant breeding innovation and the systems approach to phytosanitary issues with the ReFreSH program, as well as a heavily-attended session on emerging diseases including the recent outbreak of the Tomato Brown Rugose Fruit Virus.
Thanks to all of our attendees, sponsors and exhibitors! Be sure to join us next year, Feb. 1-4, 2020 at the new Monterey Convention Center in Monterey, CA!
Don’t forget to share your experience with us by completing our post-conference survey. Proceedings from the conference are now available (click on the conference name in the drop down menu under “Conference Video”) and you can check out pictures from the week in our Flickr album.