Focus on food safety, current issues at OPGMA Congress

“Your Recipe for Success” is the theme for this year’s Ohio Produce Growers and Marketers Association Congress, Jan. 17-19 at the Kalahari Resort and Convention Center in Sandusky, Ohio. The registration deadline is Jan. 7 and is available online at

Sessions cover a wide range of topics, including special sessions on Monday, Jan. 17, on food safety issues. Presenters include farmers, industry representatives and university specialists from across the nation, including Ohio State University Extension educators and researchers with the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.

Among the sessions being offered by OSU Extension and OARDC faculty members are:

Strawberry and Tomato Production in High Tunnels, Jan. 17, 1:30-2:45 p.m., Matt Kleinhenz, Brad Bergefurd.

Apples: Thinning Trials and U.S. Apple Industry Activities, Jan. 17, 1:30-2:45 p.m., Allison Parker, Diane Miller, Jozsef Racsko.

Cucurbit Downy Mildew Control and Resources, Jan. 17, 3-4:15 p.m., Sally Miller.

Food Safety Part 3: Training, Education and Implementation, Jan. 17, 3-7 p.m., Doug Doohan, Fred Finney, Hal Kneen, Mark Koenig, Karl Kolb, Ashley Kulhanek, Jeff LeJeune, Raymond Yoder.

Idea Roundtable: Sharing the Best of Marketing and Production Ideas and Remaining Challenges, Jan. 17, 4:30-6 p.m., Eric Barrett, Julie Fox, Rob Leeds.

Small Farm Greenhouse Transplant Production, Jan. 18, 8-9:15 a.m., Robert Hershberger, Mark Bennett, Cecil Keene.

2,4-D: The Coming Menace? Jan. 18, 8-9:15 a.m., Doug Doohan, Roger Downer.

Increasing the Chance of “Right” Hires and Avoiding “Bad” Hires Through Creative Interviewing Techniques, Jan. 18, 10:45 a.m.-noon, Bernie Erven.

Ohio Vegetable and Small Fruit Research and Development Program Roundtable, Jan. 18, 10:45 a.m.-noon, Mark Bennett, Brad Bergefurd, Doug Doohan, Jim Jasinski, Matt Kleinhenz, Sally Miller, Celeste Welty.

Social Media Trends, Jan. 18, 10:45 a.m.-noon, Julie Fox, Rob Leeds.

Family Relationship and Succession Planning, Jan. 18, 1:15-2:30 p.m., Chris Bruynis.

What’s New in Pesticide Application Technology?, Jan. 18, 1:15-2:30 p.m., Erdal Ozkan.

OSU Fruit Forum, Jan. 18, 1:15-2:30 p.m., Brad Bergefurd, Mike Ellis, Diane Miller, Jozsef Racsko, Celeste Welty.

The Roots of Family Conflict and Lessons to Be Learned Before Joining a Family Business, Jan. 18, 4-5 p.m., Bernie Erven.

OSU Vegetable Forum, Jan. 18, 4-5 p.m., Mark Bennett, Brad Bergefurd, Jim Jasinski, Matt Kleinhenz, Sally Miller, Celeste Welty.

Bee Keeping Task Force and What A Grower Can Expect from a Beekeeper, Jan. 19, 8-9:30 a.m., Ken Holthouse, James Tew.

Tree Fruit Disease, Insect and Weed Problems and Control Update, Jan. 19, 8-9:30 a.m., Doug Doohan, Mike Ellis, Celeste Welty.

Becoming Your Employer’s MVP and Teaching Your Employees to Be MVPs, Jan. 19, 12:30-1:30 p.m., Bernie Erven.

Small Fruit Disease, Insect and Weed Problems and Control Update, Jan. 19, 12:30-1:30 p.m., Doug Doohan, Mike Ellis, Celeste Welty.

EQIP and Specialty Crops: Getting Paid to Adopt IPM and High Tunnels, Jan. 19, 12:30-1:30 p.m., Jim Jasinski, Hal Kneen.

Soil Health, Jan. 19, 1:45-2:45 p.m., Warren Dick.

Vegetable Disease, Insect and Weed Problems and Control Update, Jan. 19, 1:45-2:45 p.m., Doug Doohan, Sally Miller, Celeste Welty.

Registration for OPGMA members is $110 by Jan. 7. Single-day registration is available. Attending only Monday’s special food safety and Ohio Produce Marketing Agreement sessions is free.

For complete information, as well as hotel registration, show hours and trade show information, see Pest recertification credits are being offered for eight sessions; the Congress is also a certification program of the Ohio Certified Crop Adviser Program.

OPGMA is an organization of produce growers and marketers whose goal is to produce exceptional quality crops for consumers and processors, utilizing environmentally friendly practices. OPGMA was formed in January 2007 with the merger of the Ohio Vegetable and Potato Growers Association, the Ohio Fruit Growers Society, and the Direct Agricultural Marketers Association of Ohio.

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