The Kentucky Fruit & Vegetable Conference registration is now open. The event is scheduled for January 3-4 (Wednesday and Thursday), with pre-Conference events on Tuesday, January 2. The full conference program and registration instructions are available here.

The annual Kentucky Fruit and Vegetable Conference is an event for Kentucky produce and specialty crop growers to interact and gain valuable production and marketing training. The Kentucky State Horticultural Society (KSHS), Kentucky Vegetable Growers Association (KVGA), Organic Association of Kentucky (OAK), and Kentucky Horticulture Council (KHC) in cooperation with University of Kentucky Martin-Gatton College of Agriculture, Food and Environment (UK), Kentucky State University College of Agriculture, Communities and the Environment (KSU), and Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA) have planned an excellent program with more than 90 speakers covering both general interest and specialized production topics. The trade show will have more than 60 exhibitors for attendees to visit about products and services.

“We are excited to partner again and bring this educational event to Kentucky specialty crop growers,” said Cindy Finneseth, KHC Executive Director. “With such a diversity of educational tracks, there are sessions for all growers to learn new techniques and production practices that will help increase profitability.”

The Conference will include a general session as well as sessions on vegetable production (beginner and advanced), high tunnels, organic production, fruit production (beginner and advanced), and business management. A cut flower short course will again be offered in addition to a new session on funding opportunities for specialty crop growers. Other conference events include a Farmers Market Short Course organized by KDA and a Farm Food Safety Plan Writing Workshop hosted by Cultivate KY as well as the popular fruit grower and vegetable grower meet up sessions.

“A great deal of thought and planning always goes into planning the different sessions,” said Dr. Rachel Rudolph, UK Extension Vegetable Specialist. “I think we have an especially good mix of speakers this year with several grower panels, Extension Specialists, graduate students, and experts from several state organizations.

Kentucky specialty crop growers will be presenting, as well as Kentucky Extension specialists and excellent out-of-state speakers, including: Cody Adkins, USDA Risk Management Agency; Megan Bruch Leffew, University of Tennessee Center for Profitable Agriculture; Dr. Wenjing Guan, Associate Professor, Purdue University; and Dr. Dave Lockwood, Extension Fruit Specialist, University of Tennessee.

Pre-registration ($50) is available online through Eventbrite or by mailing in the meeting registration form by Friday, December 15, 2023. After this date, registration will continue online or on-site ($75).