Illinois and Iowa Combine to Produce an Educational Opportunity for Produce Growers

Patrick OMalley, Field Specialist - Commercial Horticulture, Southeast Area

Problem Statement:

The commercial fruit and vegetable part of the horticulture industry in eastern Iowa and western Illinois have had limited opportunities for programs updating them on production practices, equipment and marketing.  Most state programming takes place in central Iowa or south central Illinois.  These sites are often prohibitively over 200 miles away.  Small regional meetings are helpful in providing information, but because of limited time and budgets it is difficult to get state specialists at these meetings.

Programmatic Response:

Horticulture Extension Field Specialists at both University of Illinois and Iowa State University have pooled limited resources to conduct a comprehensive program entitled Iowa-Illinois Fruit & Vegetable Symposium with the most recent edition in late fall of 2007.

Impact/Outcome:

Evaluations by participants of program content were highly favorable with 76% rating that they were very satisfied and 24% rating that they were satisfied.  Participants, exhibitors, and speakers all liked the timing and location of this symposium.  Participants came from four states (Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Indiana) and twenty one counties in Iowa.  An evaluation of this years attendees that participated in a previous year symposium indicated a perceived savings or revenue increase of over $100,000.

March 2008

131 Production Methods and Systems

Page last updated: June 13, 2008
Page maintained by Linda Schultz, lschultz@iastate.edu