"These are exciting times for the environmental and land-based industries," said Dr Gordon McGlone, chair of the land-based sector skills council.
"I sense a real feeling of energy and determination to succeed among increasingly hi-tech and professional micro businesses."
McGlone, who is preparing to step aside after eight years as chair, said in that time the sector's 230,000 companies had evolved into cutting-edge "21st century competitive businesses".
These need high-level skills, new knowledge and technologies, but are essential to the UK economy - something that would be made clear by Lantra in any talks with Government, he added.
Lantra's new chair officially takes over at the turn of the year and has not yet been chosen, according to the organisation, which represents 17 industries.
"What's encouraging," said McGlone, "is the sense of ambition out there, which is essential if our sector is to become a career of choice and not one of last resort."
One of McGlone's crowning achievements was to introduce national councils in each of the four home nations. "Lantra is tuned into employers' needs and these can vary in the different nations," he explained.
Of the future, he said: "There's no doubt businesses will be seeing a dynamic new Lantra geared up to meet the needs of 21st century businesses."