New England Vegetable & Fruit Conference

Conference includes more than 25 educational sessions over 3 days, covering major vegetable, berry and tree fruit crops as well as various special topics. A Farmer to Farmer meeting after each morning and afternoon session will bring speakers and farmers together for informal, in-depth discussion on certain issues.

2021 NEVF Conference Information

We have made the difficult decision not to hold an in-person New England Vegetable and Fruit Conference in December 2021 as originally planned, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Instead, we will hold an in-person meeting when we feel more confident that we can do so safely and cost-effectively, and have reserved dates for December 2022 (Dec 13-15, 2022) to gather again in Manchester for a full Conference and Trade Show. While we would all prefer to be in person this year, we feel it is unwise to take on the financial risk of attempting an in-person meeting that may not be well-attended due to COVID-19 safety limitations and travel restrictions.

In the meantime, we will plan a simple online conference this coming December, during the week of Dec 13-17 2021, in order to provide education, professional development, and pesticide credits to growers and service providers across New England and New York. We are hopeful that this coordinated regional effort will be a fun, effective, and safe way to keep up to date with the latest and greatest vegetable and fruit news! Stay tuned for details as we develop our plan for the December 2021 meeting by checking our conference website or by following us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

2021 CONFERENCE REGISTRATION

The New England Vegetable and Berry Association is committed to holding an accessible conference for as many growers as possible. The 2021 conference is as accessible as ever before, with a low cost of $50. If cost remains a barrier please contact us [email protected] to request accommodation.

Closed captioning during the online sessions will be provided. Please reach out if additional assistive technologies will help with your participation at the conference. 

All sessions will be recorded, and recordings will be available for registrants to view for at least 1 month after the conference.

Click here to register.

2021 CONFERENCE PRESENTER & WORKSHOP INFORMATION

Tillage Reduction Innovations
Approved CEUs: 2 soil & water | Pesticide Credits: 2 for New England states; 1 for New York (1A, 10, 22, 23)

Reducing tillage on diversified vegetable farms is an increasingly popular strategy to help improve soil health, but practice adoption can be incredibly challenging. This session will introduce growers to both practical on-farm management and research based information for reducing or eliminating tillage on vegetable operations of all scales. Several farmers in this session will highlight the process, successes, innovations, and disappointments with their reduced tillage journey, including discussions of using tarps, how to organically no-till plant into cover crops. Field-based researchers will also share up to date guidance and the science behind the effectiveness of tarps within these systems. Specific crops discussed include pumpkins, strawberry and mixed vegetables.

FULL SESSION DETAILS (PDF)

 

 

 

Climate Adaptation Strategies on the Farm

Approved CEUs: 2 crop

As the climate changes, how we farm will need to change too. Come join us to hear how growers have worked with agricultural service provider to assess their climate-risk exposure and try new adaptation practices including heat-tolerant vegetable varieties, using living mulches, mitigating high temperatures with kaolin clay, and using organic no-till practices.

FULL SESSION DETAILS (PDF)

Tree Fruit I

Approved CEUs: 1 IPM, 1 CROP | Pesticide Credits: 2 for New England states; 1 for New York (1A, 10, 22)

The first two talks in the session will be presented by Elizabeth Garofalo and Dr. Jaime Pineo who will discuss fungal and insect problems, respectively, that caused tree fruit growers the most problems in 2021. The last two talks in the session will focus on chemical thinning strategies. Dr. Philip Schwallier will share his many years of experience on thinning apples as Regional Fruit Specialist at Michigan State University. Accede® is being introduced as a late season chemical thinner. Jon Clements will review and summarize 2021 results of the Experimental Use Permit he oversaw in Massachusetts in anticipation of full registration of this product in 2022.

FULL SESSION DETAILS (PDF)

Berry I

Approved CEUs: 2 IPM | Pesticide Credits: 2 for New England states; 1.5 for New York (1A, 10, 22)

This session focuses on pest and disease management in berry crops – with the first two talks focusing on a specific approach (netting) and general approaches to managing spotted wing drosophila, a pest of all berry crops. The last session will focus on managing fungal diseases of blueberry that can be significant in the Northeast, Phomopsis and Fusicoccum.

FULL SESSION DETAILS (PDF)

Vegetable Disease and Pest Updates
Approved CEUs: 2 IPM | Pesticide Credits: 2 for New England states; 2 for New York (1A, 10, 23)

Please attend this session to learn more about major insects and diseases we saw in 2021. Insect pests discussed include: onion thrips, allium leafminer, leek moth, and wireworms; and diseases discussed include cucurbit downy and powdery mildews and bacterial blight in arugula. Time has been set aside for grower questions.

FULL SESSION DETAILS (PDF)

Soil Health

Approved CEUs: 1 Soil & Water, 1 Crop | Pesticide Credits: New England states; 1.5 for New York (1A, 10, 22, 23)

Soil health is a critical topic for all growers. Our invited speakers are passionate about soil health and willing to share their expertise with us. Topics will range from permanent beds and herbicide free tillage reduction to soil steaming to on-farm soil health benchmarking. Join us to learn what’s happening in New England to improve soil health.

FULL SESSION DETAILS (PDF)

Berry II

Approved CEUs: 2 CROP | Pesticide Credits: 1.5 for New England states; 1 for New York (1A, 10, 22)

This session focuses on production systems for fruit crops ranging from strawberry to raspberry, blackberry and blueberry. The first talk will explore alternative growing systems for strawberry and raspberry that are used in Canada, including substrate production. Two growers who successfully grow blackberries in New England will share their perspectives about this crop. Strawberry flavor and how growing practices affect berry flavor are the subject of the third talk, and the last presentation will present strategies for pruning blueberries and raspberries to maximize success.

FULL SESSION DETAILS (PDF)

Tree Fruit II

Approved CEUs: 2 IPM | Pesticide Credits: 2 for New England states; 2 for New York (1A, 10, 22)

The first speaker, Dr. Jaime Pinero will present second year results of a long-term project aimed at evaluating the attractiveness of selected perimeter row trees grafted with multiple cultivars know to be attractive to pests.  The remaining three talks in the session will focus on control of diseases of apples.  Dr. George Sundin, Professor at Michigan State University, will cover biology of fire blight and outline cutting-edge techniques to manage fire blight and control its spread in high density apple orchards.  Dr. Daniel Cooley will present information on how to use decision support systems as key components in managing diseases.  Dr. George Sundin will close the session by discussing various classes of fungicides that are important for apple scab management with an emphasis on activity and resistance management.

FULL SESSION DETAILS (PDF)

Cost Effective Automation for Small-Scale Vegetable Growers

Pesticide Credits: 1 for New England states; 0 for New York

Investments in cost-effective automation can pay off quickly in a world of increasing labor shortages, unpredictable weather events, and other challenges faced by vegetable farms in the Northeast. In this program, we first focus on automation systems for high tunnel production for climate control and irrigation. In the second half of the program, we interview four growers on equipment that has proven to be sound investments for their farms. Pricing, labor reduction, operation of the equipment, and other aspects of these machinery investments are discussed using an on-farm video demonstration and live Q&A format.

FULL SESSION DETAILS (PDF)

Inspirations from Away

Approved CEUs: 2 crop

The COVID-19 pandemic has given us the opportunity to bring speakers in from farther afield and also to attend meetings across the world. This session brings colleagues near and far together to highlight interesting vegetable growing practices and ideas from outside the Northeast region. Topics include: tips from Canada on growing asparagus, sweet potatoes, garlic, and tunnel crops; scaling up through specialization in Europe; and marketing strategies from the Pacific Northwest. We hope you will join us to get some new perspective and inspiration.

FULL SESSION DETAILS (PDF)

MORE ABOUT THE 2021 CONFERENCE

Enjoy the New England Fruit and Vegetable Conference from the comfort of your own living room! The conference will be online this year, due to the ongoing COVID-19 epidemic. The program will be a streamlined version of our usual in-person content, with one morning and one afternoon session per day for one week, December 13th-17th. Tree fruit, small fruit, and vegetables will all be covered, and pesticide and certified crop advisor credits will be available. Check out the schedule and registration info below. We hope to see you online this December, and in person in December 2022!

REGISTRATION

 

The New England Vegetable and Berry Association is committed to holding an accessible conference for as many growers as possible. The 2021 conference is as accessible as ever before, with a low cost of $50. If cost remains a barrier please contact us  [email protected] to request accommodation.

Instructions for Registering 

  1. Setup a Zoom account if you do not already have one. Only “authenticated” users (those with an active Zoom account, available for free here: https://zoom.us/signup) will be admitted for security and certification purposes.
  2. Visit the Zoom Event page here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_1QhsK5PCTYaTnETW6OxncA
  3. Answer all required questions and submit payment electronically through Paypal.
  4. Save the confirmation email, which includes instructions and links for joining the webinars.
  5. You do not need to register for individual sessions, you can attend any sessions you want. All sessions utilize the same ID and link, so you do not need to keep track of 10 different invitations.
  6. Only one viewer per registration/computer is allowed. This is especially critical if you will be seeking pesticide or certified crop advisor credits, each individual must watch from their own device so that their attendance and participation can be verified.
  7. Please don’t share the registration link with others, it is a unique link and is traceable to you. Again, only authenticated users will be allowed to join.

The New England Vegetable and Berry Association is committed to holding an accessible conference for as many growers as possible. The 2021 conference is as accessible as ever before, with a low cost of $50. If cost remains a barrier please contact us  [email protected] to request accommodation.

Closed captioning during the online sessions will be provided. Please reach out if additional assistive technologies will help with your participation at the conference.

 

Click here to register.

 

TRADE SHOW SPONSORS

There will not be an in-person or virtual trade show this year. However, we’d like to thank these commercial sponsors, who helped keep registration costs low for all to attend the virtual conference in 2021.

Details coming soon!

EDUCATION CREDITS

Certified Crop Advisors who attend certain sessions are eligible to receive Continuing Education Units. A QR code will be displayed during each session. CCA members must scan the QR code to receive credits. You must attend the entire session to receive credit.

*Credits are awarded in topic areas. Credits are listed by topic area under the heading for each session. Topic areas are: Nutrient Mgt., Soil & Water Mgt., IPM, Crop Mgt., and Professional Development.

Credits will be listed in the printable PDF Schedule and in the full session details which can be downloaded as PDF files under each session.

PESTICIDE CREDITS for NEW ENGLAND STATES ONLY

How Can I Obtain Pesticide Applicator Recertification Credits?

New England Applicators:

Applicators licensed in any of the New England states can receive recertification credits by attending this conference. To do so, complete the following steps:

When registering:

  • You must provide your license number and the state that issued it.
  • Register yourself from the email account you will use to attend the conference, and ensure that your name on the screen matches the name you used to register and your name as it appears on your pesticide license.
  • Keep in mind that only one person (i.e. the registrant with their matching name on the Zoom screen) will receive credits for the course on their device. Additional attendees seeking credits must register separately and log on from separate devices.

During the conference:

  • Log onto the Zoom session using an internet browser or Zoom app on a computer or smart device. Call-ins via the provided telephone numbers will not receive credits.
  • You must attend the entire 2 hour session to receive the credits for that session. If your internet cuts out during the session, please try to get back in. We will give a 10 minute grace period to resolve internet issues.
  • Please answer the poll questions, we will be using them to verify participation.
  • Moderators will make every effort to stay on time. If a session goes over time and you have to leave, you will still receive credits as long as you were in the session for the full planned 2 hours.

Your certificates will be emailed to you after the conference is finished.  If you do not receive them by January 4, 2022, please contact [email protected]

Contact Heather ([email protected]) with questions and requests for accommodations.

PESTICIDE CREDITS for NEW YORK ONLY

How Can I Obtain Pesticide Applicator Recertification Credits?

New York Applicators:

Applicators licensed in New York can receive recertification credits by attending this conference. To do so, complete the following steps:

When registering:

  • You must provide your license number and the state that issued it.
  • Register yourself from the email account you will use to attend the conference, and ensure that your name on the screen matches the name you used to register and your name as it appears on your pesticide license.
  • Keep in mind that only one person (i.e. the registrant with their matching name on the Zoom screen) will receive credits for the course on their device. Additional attendees seeking credits must register separately and log on from separate devices.
  • Email a legible photo or scanned copy of your pesticide applicator license to Elisabeth Hodgdon ([email protected]) or text a photo to 518-650-5323 no later than Dec. 9th. Credits will not be issued if we do not have a copy of your license on file.

During the conference:

  • Log onto the Zoom session using an internet browser or Zoom app on a computer or smart device. Call-ins via the provided telephone numbers will not receive credits.
  • You must attend the entire 2 hour session to receive the credits for that session. If your internet cuts out during the session, please try to get back in. We will give a 5 minute grace period to resolve internet issues.
  • Please answer the poll questions, we will be using them to verify participation.
  • Moderators will make every effort to stay on time. If a session goes over time and you have to leave, you will still receive credits as long as you were in the session for the full planned 2 hours.

Your certificates will be emailed to you after the conference is finished.  If you do not receive them by January 31, 2022, please contact Elisabeth at [email protected] .

Contact Elisabeth ([email protected]) with questions and requests for accommodations.

 

CONFERENCE COMMITTEE
Name Committee Role (Officer) Business/Institution
Sue Scheufele General Chair, 2021 UMASS Extension
Elisabeth Hodgdon Secretary Cornell Coop Ext
Chris Grant Treasurer/Travel Chair NEVBGA
Elizabeth (Liz) Garofalo Program Chair University of Massachusetts
Mark Hutchinson Education Credits UMAINE Coop. Ext.
Andy Radin Evaluation Co-Chair URI Cooperative Extension
Jim Garman Evaluation Co-Chair Garman Farm
Sandy Arnold Farmer-to-Farmer Coord. Pleasant Valley Farm
Olivia Saunders Local Arrangements/Social Media UNH Cooperative Extension
Andre Cantelmo Local Foods Chair Heron Pond Farm
Robert Arnold Media/ A-V Specialist Smart Farm Innovations/Pleasant Valley Farm
Heather Bryant Pesticide Recertification UNH Cooperative Extension
George W. Hamilton Proceedings Chair UNH Cooperative Extension
Mark Hutton Registration Chair University of Maine
Brian Aldrich Trade Show Manager Agronomic Consulting
Ann Hazelrigg Plant & Soil Science Dept.
Becky Sideman UNH Cooperative Extension
Ben Clark Clarkdale Fruit Farms/MFGA
Caleb Goossen MOFGA
Chris Callahan UVM Extension
David T. Handley UMAINE Coop. Ext.
Duane Greene University of Massachusetts
Heather Faubert URI Cooperative Extension
Jon Clements UMASS Cold Spring Orchard
Mary Concklin University of Connecticut
Michaele Williams Bishop’s Orchard
Rob Durgy CT Agricultural Experiment Station
Shuresh Ghimire University of Connecticut
Tim Taylor Crossroad Farm
Tori Lee Jackson UMAINE Coop. Ext.
Trevor Hardy Brookdale Fruit Farm/NEVBGA
Becky Made UVM Extension

HISTORY OF THE CONFERENCE

The idea for the original ‘New England Vegetable Growers Conference was conceived by Alden Miller, Dom Marini, John Howell, Jr. and Otho Wells at a Northeast American Society of Horticultural Science Meeting at UMass in January of 1978. It would be patterned after the New England Greenhouse Conference and be held in odd-numbered years while the Greenhouse Conference was held in even-numbered years. Additional planning took place at a gathering of New England Extension Vegetable Specialists and Agents in Worcester, MA in December of 1978 to discuss individual state programs, research efforts, and the possibility of hosting a vegetable convention. Clark Nicklow (UMass) was “elected” as the first General Chairman and Exhibit Manager because of his previous experience in the genesis of the

Great Lakes Vegetable Expo in Michigan. Otho Wells (UNH) served as the first Program Chairman, Alden Miller (UMass) was in charge of Publicity, and Richard Ashley (UConn) and Wilfred Erhardt (UMaine) were Registration Co-Chairmen. Other members of the Steering Committee included:  Edward Bouton and Theodore Flanagan (UVM); Perley Colby (UNH); Walter Laramie (URI); and John Howell, Jr., Dominic Marini and Robert Precheur (UMass).

The New England Vegetable and Berry Growers’ Association (NEV&BGA) agreed to back the convention financially in the event that it lost money. Any proceeds were to be split between the Association and the Steering Committee, which used its share as seed money for the next convention.

The first convention was held December 11-13, 1979, at the Sheraton Inn (now the Holiday Inn), off Route 495, in Boxboro, Massachusetts. It consisted of a general session, breakout sessions on specific topics, an evening banquet, Proceedings, and a trade show with 78 exhibits. Over 1,000 people attended. The convention was held every other year through 1987.

NEVF CONFERENCE PROUDLY SPONSORED BY


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