Bemisia, peat and Home Grown scheme on British Protected Ornamentals Association agenda

Developing the newly relaunched Home Grown scheme, Defra's peat phase-out proposals and the protected zone status for Bemisia were among the topics discussed at the recent British Protected Ornamentals Association (BPOA) AGM in Daventry.

Marketing committee chairman Ian Riggs said: "I think the main thing that came out of the meeting is that the association is in very good shape - membership numbers are increasing very well and it's very apparent that there's a heightened professionalism around the association.

"From a technical point of view, two things that occupied our discussions were the situation surrounding Bemisia and, of course, the peat issue. It's apparent that the BPOA is one of the leading lights in addressing the issues."

On the recently relaunched Home Grown brand, he said: "It has been extremely well received and is gathering pace at a very fast rate."

Commenting on the possible challenges facing the industry in the coming year, chairman Sarah Fairhurst said: "The main goal for this year is getting Home Grown out into the public domain. That is the big challenge for the marketing committee."

She added: "For the technical committee, the main issues ahead are the peat consultation and guidelines for re-entry periods - that's the thing that seems to stir up lots of feelings."

BPOA AWARDS

Presented at chairman's dinner:

- Best House Plant Grower Will Lamb, Baginton Nurseries

- The Bright Spark Award (in memory of Derf Paton) Mike Smith, WD Smith & Son

- Lifetime Achievement Award John Hawking, Springfield (Llandow)

- Award for Outstanding Contribution to Horticulture British Protected Ornamentals Association marketing committee and chairman Ian Riggs.


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