This year’s Hort Connections plenary sessions promise to cover the pressing issues facing horticulture today, from the possible incoming launch of AmazonFresh to the future of technology and our entire industry, and the huge range of speakers is sure to get delegates thinking about what’s coming next for our sector.

Hort Connections 2018 will run from Monday 18 June to Wednesday 20 June at the Brisbane Convention Centre, and the plenary sessions scheduled for the morning of Tuesday 20 June will tackle the big topics in horticulture that affect all delegates at the conference.

Kicking off the program will be Chris Riddell, a highly acclaimed, award-winning global futurist and industry recognized speaker on emerging trends and high-speed change. Chris is a renowned strategist, advisor and global trend-spotter for businesses and leaders in today’s disrupted digital world. He’s also a regular international media commentator, with hundreds of television appearances under his belt, and is sure to have fresh insights for delegates .

Our State of the Industry Panel once again promises to be a thought-provoking discussion about the our sector and its near future. AUSVEG CEO James Whiteside and PMA-ANZ CEO Darren Keating will return to the panel following its successful debut at Hort Connections 2017, ready to discuss what they see as the major issues that will affect Australian horticulture in the coming years.

This year, James and Darren will be joined on the panel by two subject matter experts:

The plenary session line-up also includes a must-see speaker for any industry member looking to understand the impact of the potential Australian launch of AmazonFresh. Drew Yancey, a veteran of the fresh produce and cold chain industry, is a CEO, entrepreneur, and thought-leader with expertise in organisational strategy and human capital development. He is the President of Yancey’s, a retail distribution and merchandising company based in Colorado, USA. Drew will present key strategic lessons that the Australian fruit and vegetable industries can learn from how Amazon has impacted their North American counterparts

Closing off the plenary sessions will be Fiona Simson, President of the National Farmers’ Federation (NFF). Fiona will be focusing on the launch of the new Horticulture Council, which brings together commodity groups and representative bodies into a policy forum led by the NFF. Through the Council, the NFF will develop a more direct and deeper understanding of priority issues affecting horticulture, and draw on the collective knowledge of those represented when deciding on how to the challenges facing the sector.

If you want to hear from these and other expert speakers about the big issues that will shape our industry in the years to come, register for Hort Connections today!


This post appeared in the AUSVEG Weekly Update published 1 May 2018. Subscribe to the Update using our online form to receive the latest industry news in your inbox every week!