Greenhouse tomato producers looking to learn more about what’s happening internationally should make plans to attend the International Tomato Congress, which takes place July 20-22 in San Luis Potosi, Mexico.
The event, which is organized by Productores de Hortalizas® magazine, a Meister Media Worldwide brand, is the only conference and trade show in Mexico focused on fresh tomato production for the export market. This year, the International Tomato Congress program will cover production strategies that improve growers’ efficiencies to ultimately increase their bottom line while building for sustainable growth.
The conference will feature several educational sessions. Murat Kacira, Professor and Researcher from the University of Arizona, will present “Optimizing Greenhouse Environment for Tomato Production” on the first day of the event, followed by Steven Bogash, Researcher-Consultant from Penn State University, who will teach attendees how to manage nutritional requirements of tomato crops.
The second day will host Paul Selina, Vice President of Applied Research from Village Farms, who will expand on “Optimizing Systemic Greenhouse Processes.” Later that afternoon, Merle Jensen, Researcher and Independent Consultant, will share his expertise on “How to Optimize the Use of Different Growing Media.”
Other topics to be presented during the event include: sustainable practices in fresh tomato production; biological control of bacterial canker; cost management in mid-tech protected structures; how to optimize solar radiation in greenhouse structures; and proper nutritional management to avoid physiological disorders.
The educational features of the International Tomato Congress will be rounded out with highly interactive sessions, including a discussion panel on growing and marketing organic vegetables, and a virtual tour to a state-of-the-art warehousing facility for fresh produce in Texas.
Day three will connect attendees to local greenhouse tomato production with a field trip to a successful greenhouse operation, El Sureño Invernaderos. Attendees will be able to learn firsthand the technological requirements of managing a greenhouse tomato production through different workshops spread throughout the operation.
Mexico is the world’s largest fresh tomato exporter, and tomatoes are the most important vegetable for the country, with 60% of this value represented by fresh tomato varieties grown under protected structures.
San Luis Potosi, the second-largest tomato growing state in the country, after registering a 38% growth in production in just one year, will host the Congress for second consecutive year. Located in central Mexico, also known as El Bajio, this region has a large number of high-tech greenhouse operations.
Last year more than 600 attendees and 80 exhibitors from Mexico, the U.S. and other tomato growing regions attended the event, and 70% of participants said they would definitely attend again. With a projected growth of 20%, this year’s event will be the perfect setting for learning, showcasing new products, and making new business connections. For more information, contact Ana Isabel Reho or go to www.congresodeltomate.com.