Southeast vegetable conference set

The 2007 Southeast Regional Fruit & Vegetable Winter Conference is scheduled for Jan. 5-7 in Savannah, Ga. Growers, vendors or suppliers to the Southeastern fruit and vegetable industry are invited to the event, the largest educational conference and trade show for fruits and vegetables in the Southeastern United States.

All commodity educational sessions and the 2007 Trade Show will be held at the Savannah International Trade and Convention Center. The Convention Center has more than 50,000 square feet of exhibit hall to accommodate the trade show's 200 booths and 16 meeting rooms for the educational sessions. The Convention Center is located across the Savannah River on Hutchinson Island. The Saturday evening reception and banquet will be held at the Westin (located next to the Savannah International Trade & Convention Center.)

There will be shuttle service, both water taxi and motor coaches, from the Hyatt Regency, Doubletree (formerly the Radisson) and Garden Inn Hotels to the Convention Center. Educational sessions and Trade Show activities will be held at the Savannah International Trade and Convention Center. Plan to attend some of the most informative educational sessions available in the Southeast for fruit and vegetable production. There are special production and marketing sessions targeted for each of the sponsoring commodity organizations.

During the two-day program, more than 60 hours of production training, pest management information, and marketing updates are offered to attendees. In addition, agricultural scientists will present results of their studies in posters for your review. All educational sessions will be held at the Savannah International Trade Convention Center at the corner of Liberty and Montgomery Streets.

In addition to the commodity production sessions, special Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) Food Safety Workshop, Organic Production and Roadside Markets workshops will be held.

The educational program is tailored to provide what you need to know to be competitive in today's market. Nationally renowned speakers offer a great opportunity to increase your knowledge base and market share. Be sure to bring your key people with you in order to cover all the concurrent sessions offered.

At the 2007 Trade Show, you'll find an exciting assembly of vendors and suppliers to the fruit and vegetable industry. With more than 150 companies already committed to the conference, the 2007 Trade Show provides participants the opportunity to compare products, talk with industry representatives, observe demonstrations, learn about the latest in fresh produce technology, and network with other growers.

The Trade Show is open to attendees on Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Food service (hot and cold meals, snacks and soft drinks) is available in the trade show area so there's no need to leave the building for lunch or breaks.

On Friday night, a welcome reception will be held at the Trade Show to give everyone the opportunity to visit with exhibitors. At 5:45 p.m., a live auction will be held for several pieces of artwork and special items. Many attendees asked for an open night to enjoy Savannah. So Friday evening is now available for you to enjoy one of the city's world renowned restaurants on your own.

The Silent Auction has become one of the most popular activities at the conference. Last year's auction featured products valued at more than $50,000. The items donated by industry suppliers are available to attendees on a bid basis and include seed, chemicals, fertilizer, jewelry, paintings and gift baskets. Funds generated from the Silent Auction go to support fruit and vegetable research and other association activities.

A buffet lunch will be served on Friday and Saturday on the Trade Show floor and is included in the price of a three-day or Friday only and Saturday only registration. In order to receive a lunch ticket, you must register by the “Early Bird” date of Dec. 15. For those not securing lunch tickets, food service is available.

The three-day registration is the most economical way to enjoy all of the activities. The fee includes all educational seminars, admission to the Trade Show, all breaks, all receptions, Friday and Saturday lunch in the Trade Show, and a continental roundtable breakfast on Sunday morning.

Full conference registration is only $115 when you pre-register before Dec. 15. After Dec. 15, full conference registration will be $140.

A special registration rate is available for each day of the conference for individuals who can only attend one day. Early bird discounts are also available on one-day registrations.

You can register on-line at or call toll-free, 1-877-994-3842.

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