The original idea for a trade show in conjunction with educational sessions was the dream of more than one branch of the green industry. In 1992, the federal and provincial governments were still quite heavily involved with funding this kind of event, but the level of participation from this quarter was dropping steadily - the writing was on the wall!
A perceived need brought together both the Atlantic Provinces and the various aspects of the green industry and Hort East was created at this time to take advantage of whatever funding still remained. The objective was to become a self sufficient organization, able to survive without outside funding.
The goal was reached when HortEast 01 balanced its books.
HortEast is a two day forum featuring key industry speakers from our own back yard as well as from across North America and beyond. Since 1993 we have offered over 200 topics relating directly to operations doing business in Atlantic Canada. Topics have included marketing, growing, staff relations, pesticides and so much more. Wherever possible the ideas come from within the industry and the organizing committee has endeavoured to respond to the changing needs of our delegates. Our trade show currently has over 120 exhibitors from across North America. Many of the exhibitors have been attending the show since 1993 and have consistently used HortEast as a marketing tool to reach their clients all across Atlantic Canada. Delegate participation has grown from 200 in 1993 to over 600 in 2003, and HortEast continues to remain as the "go to" event for industry in Atlantic Canada. On the trade show floor, delegates have the opportunity to view the latest in horticultural products and services–from seeds to equipment and everything in between.
Where to hold HortEast was an issue which prompted much debate amongst the original organizing committee members. Many meetings were held at the Agricultural College in Truro before a decision was made. Although Moncton was geographically the centre of the area to be served, it could not at the time provide a viable site. The decision was made to alternate between Halifax and Saint John, the only two locations able to offer the required facilities. The 1995 show was held in Saint John, but was not viewed as being central enough and the decision was made to stay in Halifax until Moncton was able to offer HortEast what it required to be a success. The Moncton Coliseum Complex in Moncton is now the choice venue when the show is held in NB.
The 2006 show in Moncton was a huge success and the Moncton Coliseum was a great location for the show. With a new venue in Halifax, the Cunard Centre, HortEast 2008 moved back to Nova Scotia with great success. The show is now offered on an annual basis, rotating between Moncton and Halifax!In 2014 the show will be in Halifax!!!!
Timing was always a big issue. It was discovered there was no time during the twelve months of the year, when it was convenient for all concerned. The show used to be held in January, but this time of year was often affected by poor weather, and Landscape Ontario's Congress also took place during this month.
HortEast was moved to the end of November in 2006, which is a popular time of the year for all other provincial trade shows. The upcoming HortEast show will be held in November, 2014 in Halifax. We look forward to the opportunity to provide both delegates and exhibitor's with increased marketing and networking opportunities in the Atlantic region.
Landscape Nova Scotia