- 20 September 2012
World wide demand for cut foliage is increasing in developed countries and prospects for continuing expansion of the small Irish industry for export markets are extremely good. Vast quantities are required for the much larger flower markets of the UK and European mainland, particularly for peak periods like Christmas and Valentines Day.
Cut Foliage is currently worth over €3 million in export sales but the Foliage Ireland Group who comprise Teagasc, Bord Bia, Department of Agriculture and Enterprise Ireland among others are confident that €30 million of foliage could be profitably exported from Ireland based on current demands creating up to 400 jobs in the process. To this end they are supporting the expansion of the industry through their respective expert areas that should bring about an orderly increase in production over the next number of years.
Development in this sector has gathered pace over the last number of years and currently there are over 150 hectares of cultivated foliage crops in the Munster/Leinster region. By adding value to foliage products, substantial job creation opportunities exist at local level in processing. Much of the South of Ireland is suitable for the production of foliage because of its mild moist climate and opportunities exist for growers and land owners.
Further, the existence of foliage marketing company Forest Produce Ltd in Kerry is a key factor in ensuring success in this new specialist horticultural enterprise.
|10.00am||Tea/Coffee on arrival|
|Session 1||Chairman: Jim O’Mahony, Head of Horticulture, Teagasc|
Opening of Conference
Professor Gerry Boyle, Teagasc Director
Ministerial Address: Shane McEntee, TD,
Minister for Horticulture
Chairman: Gary Graham, Marketing Executive,
Keynote Address: ‘The UK Market for Cut Foliage - current trends, supplying chainstores and potential through innovation and product development’
Dr. Simon Pearson, Commercial Director, Winchester Growers Ltd, UK
The Irish Industry - current state of play with production, research & development Andy Whelton, Teagasc
Department of Agriculture - Assisting the de velopment of the cut foliage sector Ted Massey, Agricultural Inspector, DAFM
Marketing Irish foliage - experience to date and potential for the future James Costello, Forest Produce Ltd
Demonstration of floral product innovation through design and added value using Irish grown foliages Richard Haslam
|2.30 - 3.45pm||
Visit to cut foliage demonstration/trials site at K ildalton College - led by Teagasc cut foliage specialist Andy Whelton
An opportunity to view cut foliage crops. Teagasc staff including Dr. Gerry Douglas & Catherine Gavin will detail on current Research & Development on some cut foliage species and you can view the newly planted Bord Bia sponsored species trial collection.
About the Speakers
Dr. Simon Pearson – is commercial director of Winchester Growers - one of the UK’s main producer and supplier of Floral products to the supermarkets. Prior to that, he worked as university lecturer and plants and flowers technologist with Marks and Spencer’s. His previous and current position makes him ideally placed to comment on this substantial sector - estimated at over £2 billion - between retail and wholesale. He will outline the opportunities for Irish foliage amongst the main supermarkets in the UK and the importance of innovation in the future.
Andy Whelton, M.Agr.Sc. Teagasc Horticultural Development Unit with specialist responsibility for cut foliage development. Andy has over 25 years experience in research and advisory work in ornamental and edible Horticultural crops both here and in the UK.
Ted Massey, M.Agr.Sc. Agricultural Inspector, Department of Agriculture Food and the Marine. Ted’s responsibilities include overseeing operation of the Scheme of Investment Aid for the Development of the Commercial Horticulture Sector which has assisted several cut foliage producers over recent years.
James Costello, B. Ag Sc., Dip. International Selling. Sales Director with Forest Produce Ltd, Tralee who are the main exporters and traders in foliage. James has 15 years experience in supplying the UK and European markets.
Richard Haslam – A graduate of the Botanic Gardens and Amenity Horticulture, Richard is a floral designer of international repute. He has presented florist demonstrations and workshops throughout, Ireland, U.K. and Europe. An author, he has written exclusively on floral design. He was a recent Gold Medal winner with Cut foliage designs at Bloom
Source: HortiTrends News Room