Organisers of the premier event for the entire fresh fruit, vegetable and floral industry have confirmed that this year’s exhibitor numbers have squashed previous years’ with a record number of companies exhibiting.
To be held at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre, the event comprises a Conference Day (May 17), Trade Show Day (May 18) and Special Interest Group Day (May 19), with the option of attending a retail tour of the top retailers and wholesalers in Brisbane.
The event is a great opportunity for networking, with buying teams from all leading retailers attending as well as growers, packers, wholesalers, suppliers, processors, importers and exporters, government, industry associations and foodservice representatives.
Kicking the whole event off is the annual Women’s Fresh Perspectives dinner on May 16. This year, the theme is ‘Creating a Path to Diversity’ – chosen to encourage the industry to reflect on how it can improve through workplace diversity. Women’s Fresh Perspectives delegates will hear from Alice Gorman and Gen Windley from the Just Veg brand and Kalfresh Vegetables CEO Richard Gorman on how incorporating diversity into the business plan helped to drive sales, increase ideas and innovation, build new customer relations and enhance the businesses’ reputations.
After realising that the Kalfresh Vegetables management team was man-centric, the organisation addressed the ‘bloke problem’ by established a team of farmers’ wives from diverse professional backgrounds to form a customer focus team, which was tasked to assist the organisation to connect with female shoppers, reduce food waste and value-add the company’s core crops. As a result, this group of professional women created and developed Just Veg and launched a range of pre-cut snacking carrots in September 2015 using so-called ‘ugly veg’ or ‘seconds’ that would usually not make it past the packing shed.
Register for the Women’s Fresh Perspectives dinner and hear how the Just Veg women built a 100-fold increase in value for their ‘ugly carrots’ from a paltry $50 a tonne as stock feed, to the value-added seconds pulling in an incredible $5,000 a tonne.
To register for the event, visit www.pmafreshconnections.com.au.