Jul 15, 2020
A Change of Seasons for CAST By Tim Hodson

In case you haven’t already heard, in 2021, California Spring Trials (CAST) will be evolving into California Summer Trials.

The dates for the event are Wednesday, June 23 through Sunday, June 27, 2021.

Seeking to help stimulate attendance of brokers, growers and retailers, the change in date was a direct response to requests from the broker community. Many brokerage companies felt that a June event more aligned with their schedules to travel away from their territories to learn about the new plant and programs.

June trial dates will allow brokers, growers and retailers to all attend at a slower time of the year while still being early enough in the season for quality grow-outs and presentations.

The early summer dates also allow for a larger diversity of crops, such as perennials and heat-loving annuals, to be shown under more normal growing climates.

Another major benefit to brokers is that the later calendar occurrence will allow breeders to have fully completed programs for the following season and will happen just before their extensive summer travels to present new programs.

Click here to see the full list of breeding companies who are planning to participate in the new CAST.

What do you think about the new CAST dates? Drop me a line at [email protected] and let me know.

— Tim


Walmart Seeking U.S.-Manufactured Products

Walmart is now accepting applications for its seventh annual Open Call. The company is inviting entrepreneurs dreaming of landing their U.S.-manufactured products on Walmart shelves to apply for the opportunity to meet with Walmart buyers in October. The October event kicks off Walmart’s celebration of U.S. Manufacturing Month. Participants will have an opportunity to hear directly from Walmart executives and learn from company leaders during smaller breakout sessions designed to inform, empower and encourage supplier-hopefuls. Additional information about the event is available via Walmart-jump.com.

Kroger Names New Chief Merchant

On July 7, the Kroger Co. announced the retirement of Joe Grieshaber, senior vice president and chief merchant, effective Aug. 15. Grieshaber will be succeeded by Stuart W. Aitken, currently senior vice president of alternative business and CEO of 84.51˚, Kroger’s data analytics subsidiary. Grieshaber started his career with Kroger in 1983 as a store management trainee. As chief merchant and marketing officer, Aitken will be responsible for sales, pricing, planning, promotions, execution, analytics, e-commerce and digital merchandising. He will also retain responsibility for marketing.

Hy-Vee Creates Employee Tuition Assistance Program

Midwest grocer Hy-Vee is partnering with Bellevue University for its new Hy-Vee Tuition Assistance Program, available to all its employees and their immediate family members. Hy-Vee will select 100 full- or regular-time Hy-Vee employees through an application process to receive up to $10,500 in annual tuition assistance. To receive the full amount, selected applicants must enroll as full-time students at Bellevue University and pursue a Hy-Vee-approved degree of study. The tuition assistance will be available beginning this fall.


Tim Hodson

Tim Hodson is the editorial director of GPN and Big Grower. He can be reached at [email protected]

Latest Photos see all »

GPN recognizes 40 industry professionals under the age of 40 who are helping to determine the future of the horticulture industry. These individuals are today’s movers and shakers who are already setting the pace for tomorrow.
Kait Barry
Susan Judd
Alex Kantor
Liz Hughes
Andrew Konicki
Kit Leider Pierri
Lauren Kirchner
Michelle Opela
Judson LeCompte

November 2021 GPN
Get one year of Greenhouse Product News in both print and digital editions for free.

Interested in reading the print edition of GPN?

Subscribe Today »

Be sure to check
out our sister site.
website development by deyo designs