In a press release, Sakata Seed America two new business establishments in Salinas Valley, California and Woodland, California.
Since 1988, Sakata Seed America has operated its North American headquarters in Morgan Hill, California. Per the release, the company has "initiated plans to relocate its headquarters, including all operations and personnel functions, to its 219-acre site in Woodland, California by late 2024."
“The expansion of our Woodland Innovation Center is an exciting and necessary step for the future of Sakata," said Dave Armstrong, President & CEO of Sakata Seed America, in the release. "As we broaden our leadership position in a range of warm crops, it’s imperative that we support our growing business and deepen our roots in one of the world’s most dynamic growing regions: the ‘Silicon Valley of seed.’ Our headquarters relocation to Woodland reflects our commitment to California’s vital agriculture and seed sectors, and the investment enables us to consolidate R&D and multiple other functions on a single, state of the art campus."
The relocation, per Sakata, continues an expansion project that began in 2016. Per the release, the Woodland Innovation Center "celebrated its official opening in 2018, when phase one of the building project was completed, which boasted 16-acres of operational facilities, including greenhouses, a LEED-certified office, headhouse, washery, a 25,000 square-foot warehouse, featuring the latest technology in seed processing equipment, and farm shop." There is also land to serve as the company's trailing location, R&D department and annual California Field Days.
In May of this year, Sakata also opened a new facility in Marina, California, near Salinas. The Sakata Marina Distribution Center is a 20,000 square-foot, temperature-controlled warehouse and office building. It is home to the company’s lettuce seed program and, in the future, will store and deliver multiple species, including Sakata’s brassica program, for the Coastal California region in 2024.
“We aim to supply high quality seed and market leading genetics to the Salinas Valley, a community in which we’ve grown and operated since 1985," said John Nelson, Sakata's Executive Vice President. "Marina is centrally located in the area and provides us with all means necessary to support our innovative breeding programs, as well as our growth in the Salinas Valley and neighboring growing regions."
Metrolina Greenhouses was named 2022 International Grower of the Year on Tuesday by a panel of horticulture industry judges at an awards ceremony in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
The Huntersville, North Carolina-based wholesale greenhouse operation won the coveted International Grower of the Year title and Gold Rose Award during a recognition ceremony in Amsterdam presented by the International Association of Horticultural Producers (AIPH) and Floraculture International magazine at GreenTech Amsterdam, an international conference focused on cutting edge technology and business opportunities in horticulture.
Metrolina Greenhouses and eight other companies were named as finalists for the International Grower of the Year Awards, recognizing the best producers of young plants, finished plants and nursery plants and trees. The prestigious awards ceremony, established in 2009, recognizes best practices, innovation and sustainability in horticultural production by ornamental production nurseries around the world.
In addition to the overall award, Metrolina Greenhouses is the Gold Winner in the Finished Plants and Trees category, a recognition of its status as a world leader in horticulture, innovation and sustainability. Metrolina focuses on quality products driven by innovation in robotics, machinery and greenhouse structures that optimize labor and space efficiencies, and the award judges said they applaud how Metrolina meets the changing needs of consumers with hundreds of new items every year.
Metrolina Greenhouses was the only American grower in contention for the award. To date, only one other U.S. grower has been named International Grower of the Year.
“We want to thank AIPH for the nomination for International Grower of the Year on behalf of our whole company; all 1,500 of our associates are really excited about this nomination,” said Abe VanWingerden, Metrolina Greenhouses co-CEO.
“What’s cool is this is also our 50th anniversary as a company here at Metrolina, so this is just icing on the cake on what’s been a great year for us celebrating our 50th year. We recognize that awards like this aren’t for anything we’ve done in one year or just a couple of years, but what we’ve been able to accomplish over many years.”
OASIS Grower Solutions has recently bolstered its product management team to include Mary Bruns, as its new global product manager. As the global product manager for OASIS, Bruns will be responsible for guiding a cross-functional team charged with developing the OASIS Grower product line. Helping to build products from existing ideas/projects, Bruns will also help develop new ideas based on industry experience and contact with customers, as well as realizing untapped sales potential. She will also oversee managing the OASIS sustainability plan, projects and endeavors.
With an extensive background in product and account management, teamed with a MBA in marketing from Kent State University and a bachelor's degree in business/marketing and merchandising from Bowling Green State University, Bruns will bring a wealth of experience to bear for OASIS.
The National Wildlife Federation honored Dr. Douglas Tallamy, the T. A. Baker Professor of Agriculture and Natural Resources in the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware, for his dedication to helping individuals connect to their local ecosystem and understand the impact they can make with the land they steward.
“Native plant-by-native plant, acre-by-acre, Doug Tallamy is inspiring millions of Americans to restore essential wildlife habitat all across America. Doug has an unmatched ability to connect people with sound science and show how individual actions can restore ecosystems and the food web that all species depend upon,” said Collin O’Mara, president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation. “Through his research and publications, teachings, and public outreach, Doug’s work studying insects shows us that sometimes helping the smallest species can have the biggest impact. He’s truly exemplified how we bring all people together to help wildlife thrive in our rapidly changing world.”
"I am truly honored to receive this award, but I have not forgotten that it was the folks at National Wildlife Federation who enabled me to accomplish much of what I’m being recognized for,” said Tallamy. “Hats off to National Wildlife Federation!"
During his time at the University of Delaware, Tallamy has authored 106 research publications and has taught insect related courses for 41 years. Chief among his research goals is to better understand the many ways insects interact with plants and how such interactions determine the diversity of animal communities.
Essential to Tallamy’s and the National Wildlife Federation’s goal of conversion of native habitat is providing the general public, gardeners, landscapers, municipalities, and conservation professionals with lists of native plants that support the highest number of butterflies, moths and other insects- ultimately feeding 96 percent of terrestrial bird populations. As such, Tallamy partnered with the Federation in 2014 to conduct the research that became the foundation of the National Wildlife Federation’s Native Plant Finder launched in 2016. In 2020, Tallamy and his research team completed additional work with the National Wildlife Federation to provide new Keystone Native Plant lists. Keystone plants are the centerpiece of Garden for Wildlife™ Native Plant Collections available for 36 states.
In addition to authoring numerous books and earning countless awards for his work, Tallamy also co-founded HOMEGROWN NATIONAL PARK with Michelle Alfandari as a grassroots call to action to restore biodiversity and ecosystem function by planting Native Plants and creating new ecological networks.
The National Conservation Leadership Award honors individuals for their sustained conservation commitment and leadership. Tallamy was honored during the National Wildlife Federation’s annual meeting and 86th anniversary celebration, which was held for the third time as a virtual event this year.
The National Wildlife Federation Conservation Achievement Awards began in 1966. Since then, the National Wildlife Federation has celebrated individuals and organizations that have made outstanding contributions to protecting wildlife through education, advocacy, communication and on-the-ground conservation. Previous honorees have included former Presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, First Ladies Lady Bird Johnson and Michelle Obama, and other national leaders, including U.S. Sen. John McCain and filmmaker Robert Redford.