( The Packer )

The Packer’s West Coast Produce Expo has a new date and format to provide streaming and digital content to complement the Palm Desert, Calif., event. with an expo that encourages social distancing.

The West Coast Produce Expo will be Nov. 13-14 at its original venue, the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort and Spa in Palm Desert.

“Direct conversations with the partners and stakeholders that make our West Coast Produce Expo possible indicated that postponing the show to November will not only allow more companies and buyers to participate, but also put many people at ease about traveling at this time,” said Matt Morgan, executive vice president of produce for Farm Journal.

“Our research showed that more than 80% of registered buyers surveyed were in favor of rescheduling the event, which told us it was the right thing to do,” Morgan said. “With these changes in place, we expect this year’s event to be possibly the largest on record.”

The event kicks off with a golf tournament Nov. 13, at the Desert Springs Golf Course.

The West Coast Produce Expo will incorporate virtual networking opportunities and digital extensions of keynote presentations and roundtables that will extend the energy from Palm Desert across the country. 

Expo booths will be throughout the resort with the potential for exhibits to be inside and outside, with sanitation stations and distancing guidelines a priority.
Safety measures include:

  • Distancing guidelines recommended by Marriott Hotels;
  • Built-in social distancing measures during the golf tournament; 
  • One-on-one and small group networking sessions will be optional instead larger in-person receptions; and 
  • Hand washing and sanitation stations throughout the resort.

Attendee registrations for the show will be honored and hotel room rates will remain the same. Sponsor and exhibitor investments in the show will be honored. Exhibitors can reach out to The Packer’s Gage Rohwer at [email protected] if they are unable to attend and collaborate on how to move forward.

“Rescheduling our very successful West Coast Produce Expo is fully consistent with our strategy to be COVID-sensitive and safe for our attendees and exhibitors, while establishing what we believe will be a template for the future of events in agriculture,” said Andy Weber, CEO of Farm Journal. “Events will never be held quite the same way, and we need to adapt to the change. This is consistent with reengineering our nationally acclaimed 28th Annual Pro Farmer Crop Tour into a safe, virtual and live event Aug.16–20, and immediately followed by our unprecedented launch of the first major virtual and live farm show experience with Farm Journal Field Days and the #FarmON Benefit Concert, set for Aug. 25–27, immediately following Crop Tour."

More information about the West Coast Produce Expo and a revised schedule will be available soon at WestCoastProduceExpo.com.

West Coast Produce Expo Website

2019 West Coast Produce Expo Booth Briefs