An outstanding mood at the 34th International Plant Fair IPM ESSEN 2016. The world's leading fair for horticulture was once more able to prove that it is the most important platform for the international green sector. From January 26 to 29, 2016, 1,588 exhibitors from 49 nations presented their innovations and new products along the value added chain in horticulture to first-rate trade visitors from all continents at Messe Essen. The comprehensive range on offer included new plant creations, pioneering technology, strong-selling floristry trends and marketing concepts oriented to target groups. The Innovation Showcase which set a record with 76 plant novelties was representative of the enormous innovative force of the sector.
"IPM ESSEN has once more proven that it is indisputably the most important fair for international horticulture. The innovations are introduced here and the orders for the coming season are placed here. This year, it was again possible to raise the number and quality of the visitors and the sales transactions. We are more than satisfied," was the summary made by Oliver P. Kuhrt, CEO of Messe Essen. This year, IPM ESSEN counted 57,200 visitors (in 2015: 56,500). More than 78 percent of the visitors have decision-making or procurement powers - a plus of three percentage points in comparison with the preceding year. 36 percent of the trade public already placed orders at IPM ESSEN 2016 (in 2015: 34 percent). The visitors rated the available range as very positive. Around 93 percent passed on recommendations to visit the fair. The exhibitors also made very positive assessments: 92 percent stated that their expectations for IPM ESSEN 2016 had been met. They reported on a large number of new foreign contacts and successful deals.
Internationality on an Unfailingly High Level
64 percent of the exhibitors and 40 percent of the visitors came from abroad. Around twelve percent of the guests at the fair travelled from Asia - predominantly from the Middle East (in 2015: nine percent). With regard to the countries of origin of the visitors, France exhibited a seven-percent increase in comparison with the previous year (in 2015: three percent) and Switzerland a six-percent increase (three percent).
For the first time, 20 nations presented themselves at IPM ESSEN with official joint booths. Guatemala gave its premiere. China, France, Great Britain, India and Taiwan enlarged their booths. Other pavilions were organised by the following countries: Belgium, Costa Rica, Denmark, the Netherlands, Israel, Italy, Portugal, Poland, Spain, Sri Lanka, South Korea, Turkey, Hungary and the USA. Furthermore, a 100-strong delegation from Turkey travelled to IPM ESSEN for the first time in order to obtain information about the newest horticultural products.
Record: 76 New Plant Breeds
The Innovation Showcase which was jointly staged by Messe Essen and the Central Horticultural Association (ZVG) counted 76 submissions from 33 exhibitors - a new record.
In the "Spring-Flowering Plants" category, the expert commission decided in favour of the Primula filchnerae x Primula praenitens 'Thirtyone' from Cultivaris as the "IPM Innovation 2016". In the "Bedding and Balcony Plants" category, the Begonia hybrid 'First Kiss' from Dümmen Orange was distinguished as the "IPM Innovation 2016". In the "Tub Plants" category, the Mandevilla x sanderi DIAMANTINA ® 'Orange Coral' from D.H.M. Innovation from France received the "IPM Innovation 2016" title. In the "Flowering House Plants" category, the "IPM Innovation 2016" mark of distinction went to the Oerstedella centrandenia 'Panama Orchid' from Hassinger from Wiesbaden. In the "Green House Plants" category, the Sanseveria hybrid Sansiam® Kichaka® 'SUPSAM1401' from Suphachadiwong Orchids from Thailand was distinguished as the "IPM Innovation 2016". In the "Cut Flowers" category, the Vanda Jones ex R. Br Kanchana ® Angelite 'SPCDW1405' from Suphachadiwong Orchids from Thailand was honoured as the "IPM Innovation 2016". In the "Woody Plants" category, the expert commission decided in favour of the Vaccinium corymbosum BrazelBerries® from zu Jeddeloh in the range as the "IPM Innovation 2016". The jury distinguished the Hydrangea macrophylla Frisbee® Hot Pink and Caipirinha® varieties from the Hydrangea Breeders Association with a special prize.
Show Your Colours Award
In the case of the Show Your Colours Award which was organised by BIZZ Communications and Messe Essen, the visitors and the expert jury decided in favour of four winners: Van Vliet New Plants with the Skimmia japonica DWARF Serie, Notkamp Boomwekerij with the Buxus sempervirens BUXUS JEANS OF GARDEN, Helmers Baumschulen with the Hydrangea macrophylla Hybrid and Special Plant Zundert with the Gaultheria procumbens GAULTIER PEARL ('SPECGP11').
International Grower of the Year Awards
For the first time, the international umbrella association (International Association of Horticultural Producers - AIPH) presented the "Grower of the Year Awards" at Messe Essen. Plant breeders from all over the world received marks of distinction for their outstanding performances: Costa Farms from the USA received the Golden Rose in the Finished Products category. The German-Dutch company Florensis won in the Young Plants category. Arcadia Chrysanten from the Netherlands decided the competition in its favour in the Cut Flowers category.
INDEGA IPM Innovation Award
STEP Systems received the INDEGA IPM Innovation Award. The expert jury made a unanimous decision in favour of the Combi 5000 analysis device. The experts see the innovative approach for gardeners in the fact that they can measure the most important soil parameters such as conductivity, salt content, pH value, temperature and moisture in a very simple and nevertheless reliable way in the business with one device by exchanging the measuring probes.
Green City: Meeting Place of the Horticultural Associations
The Green City again became the place for the intensive exchange of ideas between experts, organisations and associations. "In my welcoming address at the opening ceremony, I designated IPM ESSEN as a be-there event for the sector. The past days have shown that IPM ESSEN has more than done justice to its reputation as an important place for encounters and networking. It is precisely the many small and often spontaneous appointments and discussions on our ZVG booth which provide me with information and inspiration," according to Jürgen Mertz, President of the Central Horticultural Association (ZVG).
In the Horticultural Info Centre in Hall 1A, ZVG as well as the Rhineland and Westphalia-Lippe State Horticultural Associations provided comprehensive information about their ranges on offer and introduced the new image campaign entitled "Naturally Beautiful Moments" and the campaign for canvassing the up-and-coming generation called "Gardeners. Fit for the Future." At IPM ESSEN, the green associations took up not only the problems associated with the demographic change but also the decline in the number of applicants for training places in the green sector. On the Training Day, they addressed the subject of starting in an occupation.
In 2016, the ZVG teaching show was dedicated to the subject of "Healthy Ornamental Plants - A Challenge for Production and Trading!?". This portrayed various measures in order to produce high-quality plants with the minimised utilisation of pesticides which can also be transported at favourable cost while retaining the quality.
The Future Starts Now - Focus on Young Customers
The new FDF World in the Green City in Hall 1A was a meeting place for florists from all around the world. With an innovative booth concept, the Trade Association of German Florists (FDF) introduced floristry to interested trade visitors. "In the new FDF World, an open-minded, modern Trade Association of German Florists which made its visitors enthusiastic about successful flower marketing with a lot of new ideas and strong inspirations has presented itself to the national and international trade public. In our showrooms, we have displayed the newest floristry trends in interior worlds. Great attention was attracted by the innovative Floral Future Lab in which we have addressed the subject of the perspectives and expectations of young customers in relation to the specialist trade. For the sector, this is resulting in valuable suggestions and inspirations. On the show stage, top international designers introduced themselves with their flowery presentations. This wide spectrum portraying the association has aroused the enthusiasm of our guests," was the assessment made by the FDF President Helmuth Prinz.
The programme on the show stage attracted outstanding numbers of visitors on all the days. Germany's champion florist Marcel Schulz whom FDF has nominated to take part in the European Cup of Florists in Genoa, Italy, in April 2016 set off a sparkling display of bouquets in front of an enthusiastic public. Together with Mehmet Yilmaz who took the fifth place in the World Cup of Florists and the top-class florist Elisabeth Schoenemann, he showed a programme of highly topical bouquets for the forthcoming Valentine's Day, Easter and Mother's Day. The creative "Florists Group for Floral Design" from North Rhine-Westphalia inspired the trade visitors with its close-to-nature floral design ideas under the motto of "Arranged, Potted and Planted" for the spring. In the highlight show entitled "IPM Worldwide", international trainers of florists presented insights into the philosophy of their teaching. In the Projects and Cooperation exhibition area, FDF invited the visitors to a completely newly presented showroom called "just chrys". Here, the multitalent chrysanthemum presented itself in a wide range diversity. For the first time at IPM ESSEN, FDF showed the current flower trends in 2016 in the trend atmospheres called "connect the story", "more is more", "reconsider space" and "the world beyond".
"Transformation" was the motto of this year's creative competition for the IPM Fair Cup 2016. With her best overall performance, Sabrina Holz from "Prinz Blumen" in Mönchengladbach decided this attractive competition in Hall 6.1. Radko Chapov from the Justus von Liebig College in Hanover created the best bouquet with the maximum 100 points. Bärbel Grzenia from "Blumen für Dich" in Borken won the competition for the best decorative potted plant. Jasmin Jäger from the "Floral Design Store" in Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler secured the first place in the Tub Planting Arrangement category.
Supporting Programme Received Top Marks
Outside the fair halls, too, IPM ESSEN offered its visitors an informative supporting programme which went down very well. On the Wednesday, THE GREEN CITY Foundation staged an information forum especially for town planners, tree nursery gardeners, garden and landscape architects as well as municipal decision takers. Under the motto of "Green Future - Cities Need New Product Choices", it was discussed how tomorrow's cities can be provided with green spaces and what contribution plants can make to a good inner-city climate.
What chances does the horticultural sector offer in Great Britain? On the Thursday of the fair, experts provided information about this at the International Horticultural Forum which was organised by the Representation of interests of the German horticulture industry (INDEGA), the Ulmer Publishing House and Messe Essen. At the same time, the event offered the ideal platform in order to establish contacts with partners from Great Britain.
IPM ESSEN 2017
91 percent of the visitors and 96 percent of the exhibitors have now already declared that they will participate in IPM ESSEN 2017. The next world's leading fair for horticulture will take place at Messe Essen from January 24 to 27.
Further information at: www.ipm-essen.de
Outlook for hortivation by IPM ESSEN
As a supplement to IPM ESSEN, Messe Essen has developed a new fair concept for the green sector - hortivation by IPM ESSEN. The trade fair will take place for the first time in Kalkar from June 13 to 15, 2016.
Further information at: www.hortivation.de
IPM ESSEN 2016: Figures in Detail
1,588 (in 2015: 1,604) exhibitors from 49 (49) nations and 64 (64) percent of these came from abroad. Also including the forecast for the last day of the fair, around 41,800 registered trade visitors came to the fair with a foreign proportion of 40 percent. The comprehensive supporting programmes were visited not only by international participants but also, amongst others, by guests of honour, press representatives, municipal representatives and sponsors. The trade visitor proportion was 97.2 (97.5) percent.
Pascal Teitink, International Sales Manager, Jodeco Glass:
"Our order volume is very high and the average volume higher than in recent years. Therefore, we are very satisfied with IPM ESSEN 2016. The Wednesday was particularly strong since our booth was really overrun. Products in the vintage style are very popular. We have taken up the campaign of the Holland Flower Office, too, and have presented products for men. On this subject, our florist Vasen has also created designs with jeans fabric and that looked brilliant."
Melanie Schindler, PR and Event Manager, Fleurop AG:
"For over 20 years, IPM Essen has been a permanent fixture in our annual calendar and an ideal meeting place in order to enter into discussions with partners and to experience the latest trends. This year, as well, we felt that the mood was very positive. This time, we have created a marketplace on our booth with a lot of new products to touch. Moreover, florist trainees were able to win a wild card for Fleurop's Young Wild Trainee Cup 2016. We are enthusiastic about the many interested visitors and up-and-coming florists who have dropped in on us."
Roy van Hengten, Marketing Assistant, Modiform:
"That was one of the best IPM ESSENs for us. There was great interest in our innovations: cooperation between our special trays and PlantPaper, a compostable alternative for the production of paper pots. There was also strong demand for our new trays for orchids and our non-static plant pots. On our booth, we had numerous interested parties from non-European countries such as Japan or Chile."
Peter Botz, Managing Director, Association of German Garden Centres:
"We are very satisfied and we had a full house on all the days. Our members were there, as well as people interested in memberships. Here at the fair, we have been able to win over new members directly. There is a good mood at the garden centres. Although we are losing something as far as customer frequency is concerned, the turnovers per customers are increasing. We must become even more active in order to offset this falling frequency. There, IPM ESSEN is a great help in finding the right ranges and taking the right decisions. That is an important date for us in the year and an absolute must for the garden centres. Our members are all here."
Claudia de León Aguirre, Trade Comissioner, Guatemala Pacit:
"The Guatemalan producers export around 3,000 plant species. Therefore, IPM ESSEN is a very important fair for us. Here, we can exchange ideas with our customers and establish new contacts. too. IPM ESSEN offers an outstanding overview of the market. It was a very good appearance of our companies and there were a large number of interested parties from Japan, China, Turkey and Europe. Our palm trees were particularly popular."
Monique Clemens, Marketing Communications, EMSA:
"In 2016, too, we were able to use IPM in order to present our new concepts and developments to a wide public. Particularly in the international context, the world's leading fair for horticulture is an important fair for EMSA. The discussions with international interested parties are very valuable to us and we were able to establish interesting contacts to companies from the most diverse countries this year, as well."
Peter Hackenbroich, Field Service and Advice Employee, Hermann Meyer KG:
"We had a conspicuously high number of interested parties from abroad on our booth, amongst other countries, from Iran, India, Canada, Malaysia, Sweden, Poland and Lithuania. There was particular demand for battery-operated devices for horticulture and for our irrigation installation operated via an LTE radio network. In addition, we have entered into discussions with a relatively high number of decision takers from garden centres who have shown great interest in our advertising banners, signs and plant table surrounds. For us, IPM ESSEN is and will remain a core fair where we come across an international trade public."
Sonja Dümmen, Marketing Manager, Dümmen Orange Group:
"Our new fair presentation under the flag of Dümmen Orange has gone down very well. Our booth was very well-frequented every day and the trade visitors came from all over the world. Our fairly traded poinsettias were particularly popular. We are very satisfied with the course of IPM ESSEN 2016."
Armin Rehberg, Chairman of the Board, Landgard Service GmbH:
"IPM ESSEN 2016 was absolutely successful for us. After finalising the sustainable follow-on financing ahead of schedule, we have held numerous very constructive, future-oriented discussions with customers and producer businesses. Our fair booth was enormously frequented on all four days and the large number of presented concepts met with great approval. Our jungle event about the licence concept for 'I'm a Celebrity ... Get Me Out of Here!' on the Thursday with the former jungle stars Melanie Müller, Micaela Schäfer and Joey Heindle was also a special highlight. With it, we have more than achieved our objective of attracting attention for the products of our producer businesses in a particular way using attention-grabbing events and concepts."
Ayşegül Maden, Expert, Turkish Ornamental Plant Growers Association (SÜSBIR):
"This year, we are represented at IPM ESSEN with our own booth for the first time. At one of the most important fairs anywhere in the world where landscape and ornamental plants are represented, too, it was a right decision to introduce our members here. Our association which leads all the ornamental plant producers in Turkey under one roof played host to visitors from all around the world. The high internationality of IPM ESSEN is contributing to raising our recognition in the world, too."
Stuart Booker, Association Manager, Commercial Horticultural Association (CHA):
"CHA's participation in IPM ESSEN 2016 was once again extremely successful. On three booths, we have introduced the most diverse new breeds and products. We are very proud that we were the partner country of IPM ESSEN this year. Therefore, we were able to announce a lot of new initiatives during the International Horticultural Forum and also as a sponsor of the AIPH Grower of the Year Award. Our exhibitors on the booth reported on a very high customer frequency and an excellent quality of visitors from all over the world - many of them from Germany and China. Our visitors were able to see a wide available range of technologies and had special interest in our decorative lines, clematises, carnations and fragrant roses."
Helmut Selders, President, Federation of German Tree Nurseries (BdB):
"For our members and us, IPM ESSEN permits outstanding networking as well as very good subject and product positioning. As a marketplace, it is indispensable for the tree nursery sector. My personal highlights were the event on the subject of 'Urban Trees of the Future' which we staged together with THE GREEN CITY Foundation as well as the European Tree Nursery Reception on our fair booth on the Wednesday evening. We think about green subjects in an interdisciplinary and international way. In this respect, IPM ESSEN has provided us with optimum support."
John Hammond, International Marketing Specialist, North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services:
"Our appearance at the fair was a total success. The companies which have participated in USA's national pavilion are drawing a very positive response and are now already looking forward to a continuation in 2017. For us all, IPM ESSEN was very productive and a fantastic experience."