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Are the IFPA community receptions on your schedule? They should be.


I had a chance to catch up with the International Fresh Produce Association’s Joe Watson about the upcoming Global Produce & Floral Expo in Anaheim next week.

There’s one event that I attended last year at the newly-formed organization’s big show that needs to be on your radar this year: The Community Receptions.

Taking place on Friday evening starting at 5:15 — immediately following the close of the expo floor — the community receptions are four concurrent events celebrating different sectors of the IFPA communities: Retail, Floral, Science & Technology, and Talent.

  • Floral Reception: Enter the enchanted Mad Hatter’s Wonderworld to network with colleagues and celebrate this year’s IFPA Floral Marketer of the Year. (Ballroom C)
  • Retail Awards Reception: Join the retail community for A Night at the Academy. Join in on celebrating the 2023 Retail Merchant Innovation Award and Retail Produce Manager Award winners. (Ballroom E)
  • Science, Technology, Food Safety & Sustainability Reception: Celebrating the Fresh Field Catalyst and presenting the Science & Technology Circle of Excellence Award and more. (Room 304C)
  • Talent Reception: Join us to meet some fresh faces in our industry, our newest group of Career Pathways students! Celebrate fellow program alumni and volunteers while we honor this year’s Jay Pack Cultivating Our Future award recipient. (Room 304D)

    Why attend? Well, the Retail Awards Reception is the culmination of the Retail Produce Manager Awards program, and the recognition of IFPA’s Retail Merchant Awards. (Winners were announced last week – see the list here).

    And if you’ve never been, flower town knows how to party. Last year’s reception was riotous Bavarian Oktoberfest garden that you had to see to believe.

    I can only imagine what they have in store for this year’s receptions.


    Pamela Riemenschneider is the Retail Editor for Blue Book Services.