Scenic Park City, Utah was the site for the sixth Greenhouse Xchange.
Greenhouse Grower hosted its sixth annual Greenhouse Xchange this week, welcoming 145 growers and suppliers from across the United States and Canada to The Lodges at Deer Valley in Park City, Utah.
Greenhouse Xchange offers growers the opportunity to establish supplier relationships and enhance supplier relationships that already exist. Last year’s event was held in sunny Arizona. This year’s Xchange shifted back to Utah and included 24 greenhouse and nursery operations and 37 supplier companies. Thirteen of the 34 greenhouse operations attended the event for the very first time.
Growers prepare for the event by participating in interviews with Greenhouse Grower’s editors. Interviews cover a range of areas, and editors compile data for each grower based on the interviews. Ideal suppliers are then identified for meetings based on the information shared.
After all the preparation, growers arrived in Utah this week. Some growers had as many as 10 meetings per day.
“All the steps taken leading up to this week speak to the organization and focus of the process,” says Tom Costamagna, the director of plant quality for Mid American Growers who attended the event for the first time. “As an individual, you could never coordinate something like this with the opportunity to have such valuable meeting time with all of these suppliers. You get out of it what you put in, and the response from each individual supplier to the specific needs of our business has been great.”
The Greenhouse Xchange model is unique in that greenhouse operations meet with suppliers over two days in a series of consecutive 45-minute meetings. The event presents operations the opportunity to meet with senior executives of supply companies and have concise, uninterrupted meetings with pre-determined agendas in a single location.
“Could you ever have thought you’d have six to eight meaningful meetings in one day?" asks Tim Brindley of Stacy’s Greenhouses. "It’s very challenging to have this level of productive meetings. You can’t manage it day to day because of the constant interruptions at work."
Growers who are interested in learning more about Greenhouse Xchange or would like to get involved in the 2012 event next Oct. 21-24 can eMail Vertical Xchange’s John Hendel at [email protected]. Additional information is online at Greenhouse-Xchange.com.
Check out some of the growers and suppliers who participated in this year’s Greenhouse Xchange in the slideshow below.