By Kendra Meyer—Iowa State University Extension and Outreach
The Iowa Specialty Producers Conference will be held Thursday and Friday, January 23rd-24th, at the FFA Enrichment Center in Ankeny. For the first time, the event is a joint gathering of the Iowa Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association and the Iowa Wine Growers Association.
The conference will feature keynote speaker John Stanley, an internationally known retail consultant, speaker, and author. Six breakout sessions will focus on viticulture, enology, fruits, vegetables, other specialty crops, and business and marketing.
Pesticide applicator continuing instruction credits also will be offered for commercial applicators in category 1D and private applicators. For private applicators who have already been attending CIC classes, the program at the conference will count for recertification. Attendees will receive the same form from the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship they are accustomed to, but this one will also include the category 1D training.
The Iowa Specialty Producers Awards Banquet on January 23rd features an Iowa wine social hour, a multi-course dinner paired with a selection of delicious Iowa wines, and the annual awards presentations, followed by live music.
This event is supported by grant funding from the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship. Learn more at https://www.ifvga.org/conference/ or https://iowawinegrowers.org/iwga-annual-conference. Registration is now open on both sites, to members and the general public. For additional information, contact Nicole Eilers, director of marketing, Iowa Wine Growers Association, (515)-664-7754.