With 4,200 people, we set a record for the number of growers, family members, industry representatives and speakers who attended the Great Lakes Fruit, Vegetable and Farm Market Expo Dec. 6-8, 2016. Growers accounted for 2,900 of the attendees, a record number, and about a third of all attendees traveled to attend the show from 47 states and seven Canadian provinces. The Expo is an outstanding showcase for Michigan State University (MSU) Extension research, and it also draws on the expertise of researchers from across the country. The event provides fruit, vegetable and greenhouse growers the opportunity to learn about cutting-edge research on a wide variety of crops and topics.
All participants could choose between educational sessions for fruit and vegetable growers, greenhouse growers and farm marketers. Additionally, the Expo hosts a trade show every year, and that involved a record number of 457 companies represented this year.
This event is a collaboration between the Michigan State Horticultural Society, the Michigan Vegetable Council, the Michigan Greenhouse Growers Council and Michigan State University Extension. It is the premier event for sharing MSU Extension research with our diverse industry. The trade show complements the educational sessions and provides funding for them.
Other grower groups also use the Expo as a place and time to hold their meetings. For example, in 2016, the North American Strawberry Growers Association and the North American Raspberry and Blackberry Association held their annual conferences in conjunction with the Expo.
Thank you to our MSU Extension team and their work to collaborate with our partners and put together such a successful event!