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Programme

A strawberry’s journey never ends, but how can we make it even more sustainable in a digital era? The fruit sells itself by connecting the dots with innovative research, marketing and digital transformation.

This congress offers the unique combination of commercial strategy and scientific research. With this
congress we aim to create a platform for networking and information exchange based on research,growing and commercialisation of strawberries for the fresh market. The programme comprises two
days of lectures by speakers, presentations and panel discussions, as well as one day of fieldtrips on
Friday and the International Mechanisation and Demonstration Strawberry Fair organised by the
Research Centre Hoogstraten on Saturday. You can select the topics of your interest by choosing
from different themes in various parallel sessions.

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300+
attendees last year
interesting mix
of commerce and science
26
Participating
countries

Programme to be announced...

Keep an eye on this page as we will update the programme frequently with new speakers and
information. Would you like to be informed via mail, give us your contact details or subscribe for our
news letter here.

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About ISC

Delegate Registration

10:00
13:00

Welcome and opening

  • Michael Barker - Fresh Produce Industry Journalist and Speaker, UK
  • Hans Vanderhallen - Managing Director, Coöperatie Hoogstraten, Belgium
  • Kathleen Helsen - Deputy Province Antwerp - Agriculture, Belgium
13:00
13:30

PLENARY SESSION

"Strawberry Yields Forever: Growing, Eating and The Future of Almost Everything"

Daniel Levine - Executive Director of the Avant-Guide Institute trends consultancy & international keynote speaker - USA

"Robotics & Digitalisation"

Pål Johan From - CEO of Saga Robotics - NO

13:30
15:10

Networking Break

  • Sponsor Exhibition
  • Poster Sessions
  • Break-Out Session for preferred sponsor - details to be announced
15:10
15:55

PARALLEL SESSION 1

  • Research: Postharvest Fruit Quality
  1. Keynote speaker: Prof. Leon A. Terry – Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research & Innovation at Cranfield University, UK
  2. Paper
  3. Paper
  4. Paper
  5. Paper
  • Commercialisation: Evolution of the Strawberry Market
  1. Overview of the latest worldwide trends & global developments in the food and drink industry

Cindy van Rijswick – Senior Specialist Fresh Produce, RaboResearch Food & Agribusiness, NL

  1. Panel discussion
15:55
17:45

Conclusions by the moderator

Conclusions & review and preview of previous Strawberry Congresses and upcoming programme 2022 by the moderator

17:45
18:15

Sponsor Exhibition & Poster Sessions

18:15
19:00

Complimentary walking dinner (BBQ formula)

19:00
22:00

PLENARY SESSION: Welcome day 2

By our moderator - Michael Barker

09:00
09u15

PARALLEL SESSION 2

  • Research: Strawberry Breeding and Physiology

Programme to be announced

  • Commercialisation: Retail & Consumer Preferences: Strawberries leading the soft fruit category
  1. "A digitized, customer centric ecosystem economy" - Rik Vera - Thought leader, business philosopher, author & coach, BE
  2. TBC
  3. TBC
09u15
11:00

Networking Break

  • Sponsors Exhibition
  • Poster Sessions
  • Break-Out Session for preferred sponsors
11:00
11:30

PARALLEL SESSION 3

  • Research: Smart Growing & Big Data

Programme to be announced

  • Commercialisation: Sustainability and Processing

Programme to be announced

11:30
13:10

Networking Lunch

  • Sponsors Exhibition
  • Poster Sessions
  • Break-Out Sessions
13:10
14:15

PARALLEL SESSION 4

  • Research: Integrated Pest and Disease Management

Programme to be announced

  • Commercialisation: Marketing

Programme to be announced

14:15
16:10

Networking Break

  • Sponsors Exhibition
  • Poster Sessions
  • Break-Out Sessions
16:20
17:00

Interactive Final Debate & Conclusions

16:45
17:15

Congress Dinner ( excluded, pré-registration)

19:00
23:00

Fieldtrips

Programme to be announced

09:00
15:00

International Mechanisation and Demonstration Strawberry Fair

In 2022, the 12th edition of the International Mechanisation and Demonstration Strawberry fair for professional visitors will take place at the Research Centre Hoogstraten. The actual fair will take place on Saturday, 24 September 2022. During the exhibition there will be several demonstrations in the greenhouse and the field. In addition to mechanisation and demonstration, also other topics will be shown such as sustainable water use, integrated pest and disease control, and the digitisation and automation of current strawberry cultivation. Furthermore, there will be guided tours organised by the research team to present the current research topics and shows the ongoing trials.

This year our fair is integrated in the 4th International Strawberry Congress organised by Coöperatie Hoogstraten. This congress will take place from 21 to 22 September in Antwerp (Flanders Meeting & Convention Centre, right next to the central station). On Friday 23 September we will organise several fieldtrips (registration via ISC Belgium) for a national and international audience.

You can now register here.

Meet our speakers from all over the world.

Moderator - Michael Barker

Fresh produce industry journalist and speaker

Michael Barker is a journalist, editor and speaker with 20 years of experience covering the food, farming and retail sectors. He is currently a contributing editor at the Fresh Produce Journal, where he worked as editor for 10 years, and is a former fresh foods editor of leading supermarket weekly The Grocer, editor of Commercial Grower and business editor at Grower magazine.

He was our moderator in 2017 and we are delighted to have him confirmed to moderate the congress again.

As he explains himself:

"The International Strawberry Congress is an excellent forum for debate and learning about the future of such an important crop. It features leading speakers delivering high-quality presentations, aswell as insightful panel discussions and the opportunity for delegates to have their say. Both socially and from a business point of view, it’s a great event for anyone involved in the global strawberry trade."

Welcome and Opening - Kathleen Helsen

Vice-Governor for Agriculture - Provincial Council of Antwerp

After being a respected member ofthe Flemish parliament in Brussels for almost 15 years, Kathleen Helsen was elected to the Provincial Council of Antwerp in 2018 and became Vice-Governor with a broad range of responsibilities. 

 

Many of them are related to Helsen’s activities at the Flemish parliament, where she was chairing the commission on education. Reducing the gap between education and employment remains one of her priorities. This also involves motivating students to pickup one of the broad variety of jobs in the agricultural business, which is among the main economic sectors in this province. 

 

Being the vice-governor for rural development, Helsen is dedicated to reinforcing rural areas, spending extra attention on the social and economic livability of rural villages. 

 

When it comes to agriculture, Kathleen Helsen sets out two major objectives: the adaptation to climate change and an ongoing investment in innovation. The province of Antwerp is number one in Flanders on greenhouse horticulture. Space, water and energy are the main challenges. For each of them the  Provincial Council invests in the research and development of durable solutions.

13:00

-

13:30

LinkedIn

Plenary keynote speaker - Daniel Levine

Executive Director of the Avant-Guide Institute trends consultancy & international keynote speaker

Daniel Levine is one of the world's best-known trends experts. He is the director of the Avant-Guide Institute, a New York-based consultancy that helps some of the world's largest companies, brands and investors profit from trends. Daniel is a frequent guest on TV and radio and was named "the ultimate guru of cool" by CNN. He leads a global team of trend-spotters who track the latest ideas and experiences around the globe and his corporate partners include some of the world's most notable names, from General Motors, American Express and Microsoft, to Christian Dior, South African Tourism and the UNWTO.

At the International Strawberry Congress​, Daniel will help us prepare for tomorrow’s world and be more relevant, innovative and profitable.

13:30

-

14:30

LinkedIn

Plenary keynote speaker - Pål Johan From

CEO of Saga Robotics

"I passionately believe robotics can make an enormous positive difference to farmers. Technology is allowing an ever-growing number of jobs done on many farms to be easily transferred to robots, freeing up time and resource to focus on the jobs which require human involvement. And the results are backing us up,with customers saving significant amounts of labour time/cost and improving yields. And we are still only the early foothills of what we’ll see in coming years!"

Pål Johan From is CEO of Saga Robotics, the company responsible for the design, development, and production of the world-leading agricultural robot, Thorvald.


Pål is also a professor in agricultural robotics at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences where he is head of the robotics group.

14:30

-

15:10

LinkedIn

PARALLEL SESSION 1 - Research

Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research & Innovation at Cranfield University, UK

Prof. Terry is a leading international figure in postharvest research.  He became Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation at Cranfield University in 2021.   His personal scholarship has been driven by a need to preserve and maintain the quality of food to reduce losses.  

15:55

-

16:25

LinkedIn

PARALLEL SESSION 1 - Commercialisation

Senior Specialist Fresh Produce, RaboResearch Food & Agribusiness, NL

Cindy van Rijswick is Global Strategist for Fresh Produce within Rabobank’s food & agribusiness research team. She has over twenty years of research experience and focuses on the fresh fruit and vegetable sectors. She published numerous reports and articles on various topics including sustainability, the global berry market and greenhouse strawberries and has been a keynote speaker at several international fresh produce events such as the PMA, Global Berry Congress and Fruit Logistica. Her research and analyses are key deliverables for Rabobank customers and prospects, both in the corporate and rural domains.

15:55

-

16:25

LinkedIn

PARALELL SESSION 2 - Rik Vera

A futurist, an international keynote speaker and author

Rik Vera is a futurist, an international keynote speaker and author. In his work, he draws upon years of business experience at C-level in sales and marketing-related functions to discuss customer-centric strategies and change management in light of major digital disruption. He aims to demystify the buzzwords and hypes of the day. Rik has just written his second book: The Guide to the Ecosystem Economy.

In his keynote, he will explain how technology has been re-shaping the customer interaction. He will also explore the new customer, how to engage now and in the future and why B2B and B2C have become P2P (People to Platform). He will also make it clear that the north star building ecosystems is customer centricity.

09:15

-

10:00

LinkedIn
Speakers to be announced.

Registration fee

Don't forget to book your extras and enjoy the full experience!

The registration fee includes admission to all sessions, a copy of the congress proceedings, coffee breaks, lunches and the International Mechanisation and Demonstration Strawberry Fair (congress dinner and fieldtrips excluded).
Early bird - until 01/07
(Incl. 21% VAT)
515

Admission to all sessions
Welcome reception
Lunches and coffee breaks
Delegate bag
Admission to IMDS**
Virtual Only
(Incl. 21% VAT)
480

Full congress programme (online)
All posters (online)
All presentations (online)
Programme book (online)
Programme proceedings (online)
Student*
(Incl. 21% VAT)
335

Admission to all sessions
Welcome reception
Lunches and coffee breaks
Delegate bag
Admission to IMDS**
Standard registration
(Incl. 21% VAT)
720

Admission to all sessions
Welcome reception
Lunches and coffee breaks
Delegate bag
Admission to IMDS**

Extras

In addition to our regular tickets, we also offer two extras: participating in the fieldtrip on Friday, and the congress dinner on Thursday.
Fieldtrip
(Incl. 21% VAT)
105

Friday 23/09 (Incl. lunch)
Congress dinner
(Incl. 21% VAT)
130

Thursday 22/09

*To be eligible for the student fee, participants are required to produce documentary evidence of their status such as a copy of their student /training ID card or an official statement on university or institution letterhead.
**IMDS (International Mechanisation & Demonstration Strawberry Fair at Research Centre Hoogstraten)

Congress registration fee does not include:

  • Congress dinner (Thursday 22/09)
  • Fieldtrips (Friday 23/09 in Belgium & the Netherlands – incl. lunch)
  • Transport to Antwerp
  • Hotel reservation (check for special rates here)

Previous edition of the ISC

Gaston Opdekamp
MANAGING DIRECTOR, COÖPERATIE HOOGSTRATEN

“Strawberry industry is important in all EU countries, adopting different cultivation systems depending to the climatic conditions and type of agricultural technologies available. Coöperatie Hoogstraten represent the most advanced model for strawberry industry in center of EU and now spreading in different part of the world. The previous editions or the Strawberry symposium organized by Coöperatie Hoogstraten have been of high impact to bridge a gap between the strawberry academic and the industrial aspects on an international range: from research to production, from the market to the consumer.I am sure that the Strawberry Congress they are planning for September 2022 will still be a great example of scientific and technical interaction for the strawberry world, particularly awaited after the long period of restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Bruno Mezzetti
Full professor at Marche Polytechnic University Ancona

"The International Strawberry Congress is an excellent opportunity for scientists to meet again, and to exchange and discuss newest insights of strawberry research. As a scientist I think it is fantastic to also get a taste of strawberry commercialization topics at this conference, and to be able to expand my network in the strawberry industry. After a long break of international meetings, I’m looking forward to catch up with all strawberry professionals in Antwerp again!"

Michael Barker
EDITOR, FRESH PRODUCE JOURNAL
Tom Van Delm
Director Research Centre Hoogstraten
Anja Stas
CHIEF COMMERCIAL OFFICER, KMDA

“The previous Congresses offered an exciting program with strawberry experts from around the globe in the historic city of Antwerp.  The day-long tour of strawberry operation in the Netherlands and Belgium provided a glimpse of modern glasshouse fruit and transplant production technology.  This is an excellent venue to share and exchange knowledge and ideas with your old colleagues and students from around the world interested in advancing the science and cultivation of the strawberry and delivering high quality and flavorful berries to consumers.  I encourage all in the strawberry community to attend the Congress in 2022!”

Fumiomi Takeda
PhD, USDA-ARS Research Horticulturist (retired)

More info about the IMDS?

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