We are back from our summer break! And just before this break, we shared our Cultivate'23 photo report. Missed it? No worries, in this article, we will share it again! The event and trade show took place earlier this week, and as we've mentioned earlier, there's a lot going on in North America. The trade show also functions as one of the meeting places for growers, breeders, and suppliers.
The team of Suntory, Joe Cimino, and Michael Wiebe of Sakata, the team of BallSeed, and Joe Parente of A-Roo. Click here for the photo report to see what they are presenting.
Labor is the hurdle
When engaging with growers and suppliers at the Cultivate show, it becomes evident that labor is the primary hurdle currently faced by the horticultural industry, leading to a high demand for automation solutions. "The younger generation seems to have little interest in the horticultural industry and is reluctant to engage in seasonal work," exhibitors shared with us earlier on.
Flower and plant market
When hearing out the exhibitors, we noted after the crazy good covid years, sales have gone down. However, comparing the numbers to the pre-covid year 2019, they are still higher. Several exhibitors mentioned that the sales decreased by 10% but that they are still higher than in 2019. This indicates that the millions of new gardeners that the industry welcomed during Covid haven't lost their interest in gardening. And what trends did we notice at the show? We've seen more recycled plastic options, biologicals, solutions to save money, increased demand for perennials, foliage, and cacti, and varieties with multiple uses and more.
Also remarkable is in previous years, Cultivate was adorned with a vibrant array of lighting suppliers, illuminating the paths with their shiny, bright, and purple displays. However, this year's event presented a noticeable decline in their numbers. This shift doesn't come as a surprise to Chris Higgins from Hort Americas, who attributes it to a decrease in investments and mounting farm failures within the industry.