Annual meeting of breeders, horticultural exhibition starts on Monday | Local

Forced to a virtual event last year due to the COVID pandemic, fruit growers, equipment dealers and others in the agricultural industry will meet in person this year when the Washington State Tree Fruit Association holds its annual meeting and horticultural exhibition in Yakima next week.

Both events run Monday through Wednesday, December 6-8, with the 117th annual WSTFA meeting at the Yakima Convention Center and the NW Hort Expo at the Convention Center and Yakima Valley SunDome.

“Weather the Storm and Prepare for Progress in Smoother Sailing” is the theme of this year’s WSTFA meeting, which will address issues such as technology, horticulture, safety, finance and human resources, said Jordan Matson, chairman of the meeting committee.

“We live in a region that is unmatched when it comes to producing fine fruits that feed the world,” said Matson. “We have an abundance of talent to meet the challenges that stand in our way. I think these factors are reasons for us to look to the future with optimism. “

The horticultural fair is free and open to the public, with 180 vendors showing their equipment and services on stands. Most of these are on display in the SunDome, the rest in the lobby of the convention center.

The opening times of the NW Hort Expo are Mondays from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Tuesdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Wednesdays from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. in the SunDome. The opening hours of the congress center are Mondays and Tuesdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Wednesdays from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Parking at the SunDome is free and a shuttle bus runs between the two locations.

Pre-registration is required to participate in the annual meeting of the Tree Fruit Association. Parcel pick-up begins on Sunday from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. in the congress center.

The meeting opens Monday at 8:00 am with comments from Matson; Jon DeVaney, WSTFA President; Mark Powers, President of the Northwest Horticulture Council; Diane Kurrle, senior vice president of the US Apple Association; and Craig Green, President and CEO of Tree Top Inc.

The geopolitical strategist Peter Zeihan will give the keynote “Life After Deglobalization”. His remarks are followed by the 42nd Batjer address entitled “Crowdsourcing the Way Forward: A Reflective View to the Future” by Mike Willett, Director of Integrated Plant Health Strategies.

On Monday afternoons, all day Tuesday and Wednesday mornings, seminars on economics, tree fruit breeding and physiology, pest control, legal challenges and other topics take place.

Spanish-language seminars are offered on Tuesday mornings and afternoons in the convention center.

For more information, visit and click the Annual Meetings tab.

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