The Horticultural Research Institute (HRI) and the New England Nursery Association (NENA) have created of the New England Nursery Association Industry Growth Fund, a new type of grant program through HRI.
This new purpose-restricted fund was designed to allow grants to be drawn from both the interest and the principal as needed.
“NENA members are excited to support the kind of innovation and new thinking that will ultimately shape the future of the horticulture profession,” says Peter House, president of NENA and owner of East Haven Landscape Products, East Haven, Conn. “Our collaboration with Horticultural Research Institute — through this new Industry Growth initiative — enables NENA to make significant contributions and continue to move the industry forward.”
The new alliance brings together HRI’s 52-year history as the horticulture industry’s leading green industry research and educational foundation and NENA’s vision to maximize organizational funds, collaborate closely with experts and put investment monies to work where they will directly help New England commercial horticulture industry.
A signing ceremony to formally implement the Industry Growth Fund was held during New England Grows in Boston earlier this month.
Signing on behalf of HRI was Dr. Joseph Albano, research programs director.
“The agreement between HRI and NENA serves as an example for other state or regional horticultural associations to combine resources with HRI, allowing HRI to serve as the central institute for the horticultural research granting process,” Albano says. “By combining forces, HRI and NENA will be in a better position to select and direct research that is critical to the New England green industries.”
“NENA worked closely with HRI to design a unique fund, flexible enough to support innovative local projects that we hadn’t been able to fund under the traditional model,” says Virginia Wood, executive director of NENA. “While our endowment fund with HRI remains an important component of our research outreach, the new Industry Growth Fund enables NENA to more readily fund a variety of important local projects.”
The new NENA/HRI Industry Growth Initiative is designed to support such projects as:
• “Local-to-NENA” platforms that build community and promote collaboration
• Economic impact studies that bolster the industry
• Marketing strategies that boost sales of plants and services
• Research that provides scientifically proven answers to critical questions
• Education to engage the next generation
• Programs to support and inspire tomorrow’s horticultural workforce
HRI is the recognized research affiliate of AmericanHort. For more information about HRI, its grant-funded research or programming, visit the HRI website.
For more information about NENA, visit the NENA website.