GUANGZHOU CITY: More than 20,000 new seed varieties, crop cultivars, agriculture products and technologies were exhibited at the 16th Guangdong Seed Expo, organized last week in Southern China’s largest metropolitan area. (Scroll Down for Photo Gallery.)
Held 9-13 December, the event attracted more than 26,000 visitors, who came to see the latest in seed and agriculture from hundreds of well-known international and Chinese companies, including about 40 APSA members.
This year’s expo was divided into three exhibition areas managed by the event’s main organizers: the Government of Guangzhou City, the Guangzhou Seed Trade Association and Nanfang Rural Newspaper.
An indoor exhibition – held at the Tianhong Hotel in Tianhe district – was fully booked out by 386 hotel room exhibitors. Increasingly popular at trade expos in China, hotel exhibition rooms are hotel rooms that have been converted into an exhibition space, facilitating a more exclusive and private business environment than conventional exhibition booths.
“We had to book out rooms on a first come, first-service basis, which meant we couldn’t accommodate all the companies who wanted to exhibit this year,” remarked Mrs. Zhang Kaisui, Secretary-General Guangdong Seed Trade Assocation, which has been an APSA active member for many years.
Field demonstrations and exhibitions were held at two different locations; namely, at the Seed and Breeding Industry Town in Nansha District, and at the Kemulang Exhibition area of the Guangdong Agricultural Technology Extension Station, in Tianhe District.
More than 600 companies from more than 10 countries – including China, the US, Germany, the Netherlands, Israel，Japan and South Korea – exhibited at the Guangzhou Seed and Breeding Industry Town.
This new addition, outdoor exhibition area spanned some 400,000 square meters, where about 1,200 vegetable varieties; 6,000 fruit varieties and 2,000 flower and ornamental varieties were showcased. Also on display was a variety of modern and high-tech seed and cropping technologies and equipment.
Innovation was emphasized at the main exhibition, held in conjunction with the Kemulang Forum, under the theme “New Variety, New Technology, New Pattern, New Equipment, Giving Agriculture the Wing of Science and Technology”.
The main exhibition also featured 86 premium exhibition booths, and a field exhibition area spanning 133,000 square meters, where no less than 6,000 new cultivars of vegetable and field crops were demonstrated.
The expo’s opening ceremony on Dec 12 was attended by 200 esteemed guests, including officials from the Ministry of Agriculture, Guangdong government and representatives from a number of regional, international and national seed associations and companies.
Representing APSA at the ceremony were Executive Committee member, Dr. Ma Dehua, Executive Director Heidi Gallant and China Liaison Officer Li Xiaofeng.
APSA Executive Director Heidi Gallant had the opportunity to present APSA’s congratulations on the event formally with a speech at a dinner organized by the Guangzhou Seed Trade Association on December 10.
Commenting on her impressions of the event this year, Mrs. Gallant said, “During my second visit to the Guangzhou Seed Expo, I was once again amazed at the scale of this event. The huge garden of varieties is truly astounding and this event is really an amazing showcase of Chinese agriculture and technology. The highlight of the event for me is the chance to visit with our members who attend and showcase their products at this event. I also really enjoyed the tour of the greenhouses and a lesson on selecting the best cucumbers from our Executive Committee member and cucumber expert, Dr Dehau Ma!”
Mrs. Gallant also had the opportunity to attend an information session about the Guangzhou Seed and Breeding Industry Town on 11 December at the Baiyun International Convention Center, which was presided over by the Chinese Father of Hybrid Rice, Yuan Longping.
At last year’s edition, the Guangzhou government revealed ambitious plans to make to develop Guangdong into a seed production center through private-public partnerships and social capital incentives (story here).
Held annually since 2002, the Guangdong Seed Expo has become one of China’s top seed trade and research events, where tens of thousands of excellent new varieties and supporting technologies have been showcased, providing farmers and producers access to all the breakthroughs in seed technology and agriculture, from China and around the world.
Words and Photos by Xiaofeng Li