2012 June 18-21, Leavenworth, Washington, USA
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2nd International Organic Fruit Research Symposium

Organic Fruit 2012: From Research to Practice

June 18-21, 2012 -- Leavenworth, Washington, USA

Note: The Symposium has finished.  Most oral presentations were captured electroncially and are now available on eOrganic (55 presentations).   A volume of Acta Horticulturae will be published from those papers submitted by both oral and poster presenters.   For more information, contact David Granatstein, Washington State University granats@wsu.edu .  A formal Work Group on Organic Fruit was established at the symposium as well.  The next Symposium is planned for 2015.

Abstracts of the oral and poster presentations are available here.

Sponsored by the International Society for Horticultural Science

Organic fruit production and marketing has expanded dramatically worldwide in the past decade. How much bigger can it grow? What are the barriers to it reaching its full potential, what research is underway to advance its growth, and what more is needed? What are the impacts of the organic fruit production and marketing system on society and the environment, and what are its implications for policy makers? These are some of the questions explored at the Symposium. 

At this research Symposium, located in a major organic tree fruit and berry producing region, we examined and discussed crop production, plant protection, genetics, soils and nutrition, post-harvest, markets, policy, and economics, and the impacts of organic fruit on the environment and people. We featured speakers on key trends that are likely to shape the organic fruit sector in the next decade and the research underway that will help keep it viable.  Poster sessions allowed researchers to share their findings in more detail. A tour of local organic farms and fruit companies was a highlight. This event was a follow-up to the 2008 organic fruit conference in Vignola, Italy, the 2006 organic pome fruit conference in Nova Scotia, Canada, and the four North American Organic Tree Fruit Research Symposia (2001-2007).

Washington State is a leading producer of high-quality organic apples, pears, cherries and berries that are marketed nationally and globally through retail distribution chains, as well as locally at farmers' markets and food co-ops. The state encompasses both arid to semi-arid climates with fewer disease problems, as well as a wetter maritime climate with more disease problems. From large to small farms, Washington State is successfully producing organic fruit, with organic apples comprising nearly 10% of the area of all commercial apples in the state.

The Symposium was held in the city of Leavenworth, nestled in the eastern foothills of the beautiful Cascade Mountains, which separate wetter western Washington from the drier east. Centrally located on the edge of the main fruit-growing regions of the state, Leavenworth is about 3 hr driving time from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. Tourism opportunities abound, from wine tasting, to white-water rafting, to hiking. Three national parks are within a half-day’s drive, as well as Puget Sound and the Pacific Ocean.

For more information, contact David Granatstein, Washington State University granats@wsu.edu .


Symposium Organizers

The Symposium was held under the auspices of the International Society of Horticultural Science, Commission on Sustainability through Integrated and Organic Horticulture.

Planning Committee

David Granatstein, Washington State University

Preston Andrews, Washington State University

Harold Ostenson, organic orchard consultant

Scientific Committee

Preston Andrews, Washington State University

Deirdre Birmingham, orchardist (Wisconsin) and Board President, Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF)

Jay Brunner, Washington State University

Steve Ela, orchardist (Colorado) and former OFRF Board member

David Granatstein, Washington State University

Chuck Ingels, University of California Cooperative Extension

Wojciech Janisiewicz, USDA Agricultural Research Service, West Virginia

Karen Lewis, Washington State University

Jim McFerson, Washington Tree Fruit Research Commission

Harold Ostenson, organic orchard consultant, Washington, and former Director, Stemilt Growers Organic Program

Greg Peck, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Bob Prange, former Agriculture Canada, and ISHS representative, Nova Scotia

Curt Rom, University of Arkansas

Franco Weibel, Research Institute of Organic Agriculture, Switzerland

Chang-Lin Xiao, USDA Agricultural Research Service, California














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