December 7, 2015 | By: Aimee Nielson

The 2016 Kentucky Fruit and Vegetable Conference will have something of interest for all fruit and vegetable producers. The event runs from 8 a.m. EST Jan. 4 until 5 p.m. Jan. 5 at Lexington’s Embassy Suites Hotel.

Preconference activities on Jan. 3 will include tree fruit, small fruit, and vegetable roundtable discussions.

“We are looking forward to this conference and offering many excellent sessions with over 70 speakers,” said John Strang, University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment horticulture specialist. “Success with fruit and vegetables greatly depends on a producer's management skills, especially being able to do things on time. This conference is for beginners and advanced growers alike. We have something to share with everyone, no matter their experience level.”

Participants may choose from several concurrent sessions with topics including farmers markets, commercial fruit and vegetable production, greenhouse and high tunnel production, small fruit production, organic production, direct marketing, the Grape and Wine Short Course, direct and wholesale marketing, food safety and processing, and the Non-Insured Crop Disaster Assistance Program.

Participants will also get to enjoy Kentucky Proud products at the Exhibitor/Grower and conference luncheons as well as to visit with exhibitors at the trade show.

The conference is a joint meeting of the Kentucky State Horticulture Society, the Kentucky Vegetable Growers Association, the Organic Association of Kentucky, and the Kentucky Wine Association.

An optional Celebration of Kentucky Wines at 6 p.m. Jan. 4, will feature Kentucky 2015 Commissioner’s Cup Award winning wines. The $20 cost for the event includes a souvenir glass and refreshments.

Participants will have an opportunity to use a Trading Post bulletin board to sell used equipment.

Conference registration is $40 per person and includes a one-year membership in the Kentucky Vegetable Growers Association, Kentucky State Horticulture Society or the Organic Association of Kentucky and entry to the Grape and Wine Short Course. Strang recommended preregistering by Dec. 18 to ensure nametags and conference materials for participants. Registration is also available at the door.

The UK Cooperative Extension Service, Kentucky State University and the Kentucky Department of Agriculture jointly sponsor the conference.

For more information about the conference, or to request registration materials, contact Mary Ann Kelley at 270-365-7541, ext. 216. The conference program and registration sheet are available online at


John Strang, 859-257-5685