The opportunity to connect with international breeders has always been a valued part of the Seminis grower experience. While the global pandemic has put a stop to international travel, the production cycle hasn’t stopped and neither has the need for breeder insights.
That is why the local Seminis team found a way to bring brassica breeder, Meindert Boon to New Zealand growers, virtually.
Early adopters of the Seminis’ High-Rise™ concept in New Zealand have helped drive uptake of the new concept, known for ease of harvest and labour-saving traits. Learning from the breeder about how to maximise High-Rise types, share knowledge and ask questions is valuable as growers seek to better understand the potential of these new types.
Based in the Netherlands, Meindert was unable to travel to New Zealand to meet in-person. Instead, Meindert ran three one-hour virtual sessions discussing his brassica breeding efforts, information on new and emerging varieties and provided insight into the performance of High-Rise broccoli concepts around the world. He also welcomed questions and engaged in a dynamic and insightful dialogue.
“Although Meindert wasn’t able to join us here in New Zealand this year, the virtual briefings still allowed customers to engage and connect with him directly,” says Seminis Regional Business Manager for New Zealand, Nick Williams. “Those conversations are crucial, so it was a great opportunity for our customers to ask questions and share feedback.
“The growers who attended really appreciated hearing about what goes on behind the scenes from a breeding perspective and gaining a better understanding of our business.” says Nick.
The virtual interactions not only benefitted customers, as they also gave Meindert the opportunity to hear first-hand their experience with Titanium, and the overall adaptability of the High-Rise programme in the country.
“There is no doubt that virtual engagement is going to continue in future,” says Nick.
“Of course, face to face offers a different range of benefits, especially field walks. However, virtual meetings give us a high-touch and engaging discussion that can allow dialogue more frequently at a time when growers need it” says Nick.
Read more about Meindert and his award-winning work, here.