Just four months after its covid-delayed October 2021 edition in Orlando, the Indoor Ag-Con trade show & conference welcomed the indoor|vertical farming and controlled environment agriculture (CEA) industry back for its February 28-March 1, 2022 run at Caesar Forum Las Vegas. And what a welcome it was. Marking an 82 percent increase over the Orlando attendance figure, 800 + growers, suppliers, start-ups, and other industry members came from 48 states/ territories and more than 20 countries, including a high number of c-suite executives. Bolstering the figure further, nearly 300 attendees from The National Grocers Association (NGA) Show, co-located at Caesars Forum, also visited the show, taking the total attendance figure over 1100.
The Indoor Ag-Con Expo Floor also grew by 60 percent – from 50 booths in 2021 to 80 in 2022 – filled with the latest innovations in irrigation, control systems, lighting, substrates, and more. Rounding out the show statistics, the 2022 edition’s educational conference brought together 77 speakers participating in 21-panel discussions and 3 CEO keynote sessions.
“From our sold-out show floor and record-breaking attendance to reports of game-changing connections and new relationships forged, we’ve been humbled by the positive feedback we’re received for our 2022 show from exhibitors and attendees alike,” says Brian Sullivan, CEO, Indoor Ag-Con. “Our show theme, ‘growing your business,’ truly came to life here in Las Vegas this week. The CEA industry is growing quickly and we are proud to provide the platform for the education, networking and innovations showplace needed to take it to the next level.”
“We are also excited about the untapped networking potential that exists between Indoor Ag-Con and The NGA Show,” adds Nancy Hallberg, owner | partner, Indoor Ag-Con. “This first co-location was exploratory and gave both show teams the opportunity to start identifying ways we can really bring grocers and growers together. We think the 2 shows offer untapped business growth opportunities for our respective audiences and look forward to delivering on that when we come together again in 2023.”
Among the highlights of the show included:
Indoor Ag-Con | Signify VIP welcome party
Signify partnered with Indoor Ag-Con to tee-up the 2022 edition with a VIP Welcome Party on Sunday evening, February 27 at Topgolf Las Vegas. Indoor Ag-Con speakers and other industry VIPs came together for an incredible evening of golf, networking, cocktails, food, music and fun with industry friends -- compliments of Signify.
CEO keynote sessions
Attendees had the chance to hear from executives from some of the industry’s top growing operations. Steve Platt, CEO of BrightFarms, and Steven Bradley, Vice President of Cox CleanTech, Cox Enterprises, kicked off the conference on Monday morning, February 28. Later that day Jonathan Webb, CEO, AppHarvest took the stage. On day two, Matt Ryan, CEO, Soli Organic (formerly Shenandoah Growers) started the day with the morning keynote address.
Educational tracks & expo floor theater panel discussions
The 2022 edition featured 3 educational tracks – Grower, Business & Technology – that brought industry experts together covering a wide range of topics from lighting specs and substrates to energy optimization, water technology, fertilizer, workforce development, robotics, automation investing/finance, and sensor technology. In addition, the Expo Floor Theater offered up additional content with sessions on everything from seeds and produce branding to grocer/grower relationship development, why vertical farms succeed and more.
Sold out expo floor
Expanding to 80 booths, this year’s Expo Floor was home to some of the biggest names in CEA as well as up-and-coming suppliers. From lighting and grow systems to substrates and irrigation, growers were able to see the newest innovations all under one roof.
Daily lunches and an afternoon cocktail reception on the expo floor expanded the show’s networking opportunities.
Looking ahead, Indoor Ag-Con Las Vegas will return to Caesars Forum February 27-28, 2023 and will once again co-locate with The National Grocers Association Show.