Newark, Del. — The mass-market floral industry will come together for inspirational education, networking, leadership recognition and community when Produce Marketing Association’s (PMA) 2017 Fresh Summit Convention & Expo convenes Oct. 19-21. This year’s Fresh Summit will be in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA, at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center.
“This year’s floral programming is designed by industry, for industry, and offers something for everyone across our supply chain to help your business bloom,” said Debora Coleman, vice president of floral for retailer Albertson’s Companies and chair of PMA’s Floral Council. “The volunteer industry members of the PMA Floral Council and the PMA Fresh Summit Committee have designed a packed agenda specifically for our floral community.”
The floral agenda includes on-trend workshops and other education, a networking reception, announcement of the 2017 Floral Marketer of the Year award winner, Floral Buyer Roundtables, and the Floral Pavilion, a destination for the floral industry on the Fresh Summit trade show.
Floral workshops include color trends
Three floral-specific educational workshops are planned, including a session on evolving color trends, their influence on the floral landscape, and how to harness them to expand mass-market retail floral sales. Pantone consultant Leatrice Eiseman, who has been called “the international color guru,” will present that workshop. She has authored nine books on color, consults to businesses on color in product development, and is a sought-after speaker and media commentator on color.
“This particular workshop is designed to help attendees understand the forces behind color trends and plan their businesses accordingly, with the goal of shifting floral purchases from special occasion buys to everyday buys,” said Coleman.
In addition to the planned floral workshops, other Fresh Summit workshops and its general sessions featuring internationally recognized speakers are also relevant to the floral community.
Reception offers community, award recognizes leadership
To bring the mass-market floral supply chain together at Fresh Summit, the PMA Floral Council will host a Floral Networking Reception on Thursday evening, Oct. 19.
“Our industry thrives on our ‘together’ time. This reception will be a great opportunity to celebrate as a community, to reconnect with business acquaintances and to make new connections, too,” said Coleman.
The 2017 Floral Marketer of the Year will be announced at the reception. This PMA award program is designed to promote leadership development in the mass-market floral retail industry. The 2017 award winner will be announced by the 2016 winner, Michael Schrader, floral director for Schnuck Markets, Inc.
Floral industry’s innovation, creativity on display at the expo
The Fresh Summit expo again features the Floral Pavilion, featuring nearly 100 exhibiting companies, bringing together mass-market floral buyers and sellers.
Floral attendees are encouraged to check out the Floral Showcase within the Fresh Ideas Showcase before heading onto the expo floor and the Floral Pavilion. The Floral Showcase will preview innovative floral products and services that can be found at the Fresh Summit expo. The showcase can be viewed before, during and after expo hours.
Other notables include roundtables, new days
Floral Buyer Roundtables will return to Fresh Summit by popular demand. These short, speed-dating-like meetings bring buyers and sellers together for introductory meetings. The roundtables sold out at last year’s Fresh Summit, as well as at this year’s two PMA Fresh Connections: Floral events held this summer.
New this year, Fresh Summit will convene a day earlier than past years: Thursday through Saturday Oct. 19-21, with education and insights Thursday, Oct. 19 and the expo on Friday and Saturday Oct. 20-21.
Programming channels Floral Council priorities
Fresh Summit’s floral programming is designed to help address three priority business needs the PMA Floral Council has identified for the mass-market floral industry, according to Coleman. Those priorities are: research on consumer and industry trends and its business implications; networking; and professional and leadership development.
PMA also offers floral events in person and via webinar throughout the year, and a range of floral content can be accessed 24/7/365 on PMA.com’s floral Topics page.
“The Floral Council and PMA staff work hard to deliver floral value year-round, and we are looking forward to taking that service to a new level next year with more floral business-building research and events, and investing more in industry talent and industry representation in Washington, D.C.,” said Coleman.
Register early and save
Fresh Summit is an open show; pre-approval is not needed to attend. This open policy helps to attract industry members from across the floral supply chain.
Fresh Summit registration and housing reservations are now open. Attendees can register early by Sept. 15 to save on registration. Floral buyers receive significant discounts on registration. The Floral All Access Pass offers the best value, reports Roberts, as it includes access to all general sessions and workshops, several networking receptions, and all days of the expo. Passes for the trade show only are also available.
For more information and to register in advance for the 2017 Fresh Summit Convention & Expo, visit www.freshsummit.com. On-site registration is available in New Orleans.
About Produce Marketing Association (PMA)
Produce Marketing Association is the leading trade association representing companies from every segment of the global produce and floral supply chain. PMA helps members grow by providing connections that expand business opportunities and increase sales and consumption. For more information, visit www.pma.com.