FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE â€“ January 28, 2008
CITRUS EXPO EXHIBITOR SIGN UP AT RECORD PACE â€“ PROGRAM PLANNING BEGINS!
Exhibitor reservations for the 17th annual Citrus Expo August 20 & 21, 2008 at Lee Civic Center Ft. Myers are well ahead of schedule even before initial exhibitor brochures have been distributed. More than half of the available exhibit spaces have been reserved months earlier than at anytime in history.
Meanwhile, Citrus Expo Steering Committee members are seeking grower input (see end of this post for list of committee members)as they begin the process of building another seminar program from the ground up to address the most pressing needs of the grower community.
â€œThis fall will be a critical time for citrus growers to take stock of where research programs are and where they are headed,â€ says Dr. Harold Browning, Director of University of Floridaâ€™s Citrus Research and Education Center at Lake Alfred (UF/CREC), and a member of the Citrus Expo Steering Committee. â€œWe expect to have some progress reports available on a number of projects, and Citrus Expo provides excellent timing for growers, researchers and industry to gather before the harvest season gets underway,â€ he adds.
Last yearâ€™s trade show sold out with more than 150 exhibitors, hosting more than 2,200 attendees for the two day event. With the majority of the available exhibits reserved so early this year the 2008 Citrus Expo is expected to host the largest grower attendance ever. Attendance and complimentary hot lunch remains free both days to bona-fide grove owners & managers, citrus production managers, professional crop advisors, and association representatives & board members. Non-exhibiting company and vendor personnel may become a sponsor at any level for admission to trade show and seminars, or purchase a one- or two-day admission pass.
Citrus Expo is organized and operated by Citrus Industry Magazine and Southeast AgNet Radio Network, which also operates the daily internet news portal, www.agnetonline.com. The 2008 Citrus Expo Steering Committee includes growers and representatives from Gulf, Highlands and Peace River Valley Citrus Growers Associations, Florida Citrus Production Managers Association, University of Florida representatives including UFâ€™s Citrus Research & Education Center Director, and exhibitor representatives. A large portion of Expo proceeds are donated annually to support citrus research at UF/CREC and regional grower association programs.
An added feature this year will be availability of private meeting rooms in the Trade Show for small lunch meetings of industry groups and boards of directors. â€œWe hope to encourage leaders of the industry to eat and meet while already on-site at this major industry event,â€ says Gary Cooper, president of Southeast AgNet.
Updates on sponsorships, area lodging, exhibitors and attendee pre-registration will be available in early February at (www.CitrusExpo.net). Pre-registered growers will again be entered to win a gun safe being sponsored for the third consecutive year by Everglades Farm Equipment.
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2008 CITRUS EXPO STEERING COMMITTEE
Ron Hamel, Executive Director, & Norm Todd, Grower â€“ GCGA
Ray Royce, Executive Director & Bobby Barben, Grower â€“ HCCGA
Barbara Carlton, Executive Director & Rowdy Bateman, Grower â€“ PRVCGA
Jerry Newlin, Grower â€“ Florida Citrus Production Managersâ€™ Association
Drs Harold Browning & Tim Spann â€“ UF/IFAS/CREC Lake Alfred; and Bob Rouse â€“ SWFREC
Richard Buker, Helena Chemical; Robert Murray, Wedgworth Fertilizer; & Rachel Walters, Bayer CropScience â€“ Exhibitor Representatives
Gary Cooper, Robin Loftin & Dave Herndon – Southeast AgNet/Citrus Industry Magazine
GCGA â€“ Gulf Citrus Growers Association
PRVCGA â€“ Peace River Valley Citrus Growers Association
HCCGA â€“ Highlands County Citrus Growers Association
UF/IFAS/CREC â€“ Univ of Florida Institute of Food and Agric Sciences, Citrus Research & Educ Cntr
SWFREC â€“ Southwest Florida Research & Education Center