2014 Florida Ag Expo offers glimpse into future of agriculture

An excellent program and cutting-edge research trials drew a near-record crowd to the UF/IFAS Gulf Coast Research and Education Center in Balm November 5, for the 9th annual Florida Ag Expo. Nearly 700 agriculture professionals from across the state came together to explore innovative field trials, an exclusive educational program and a trade show featuring exhibits of new products, equipment and technology.
  • An unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) demonstration revealed applications for this sky-high technology, whose data collection capabilities are expected to help farmers increase yields and cut costs.
  • Field trials conducted by scientists at UF/IFAS Gulf Coast Research and Education Center were the focus of tours during the event – one spotlighting vegetable breeding, production and crop protection; the other, vegetable health.
  • A grower panel kicked off the program, with panellists sharing solutions for “Fixes on the Farm.” The program also provided an update on the Food Safety Modernization Act, including Produce Safety Rule changes and the need for microbial sampling; marketing tips, from leveraging the Fresh from Florida brand to tapping into social media; and pest and disease control strategies.
  • The tradeshow featured tastings that enabled farmers to try the latest produce varieties, and big equipment ranging from a helicopter applicator to a mechanical tomato harvester.
  • Artwork by the Florida Highwaymen was featured (artist R.L. Lewis created a piece as attendees watched!) among many giveaways by Expo sponsors.

The 10th annual Florida Ag Expo is scheduled for November 4, 2015.

Please visit www.floridaagexpo.com for more information.

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