The Society of American Florists (SAF) is hosting the 2007 Outstanding Varieties Competition Sept. 26-29 at SAF Palm Springs 2007, SAF’s 123rd annual convention in Palm Springs, Calif. Each year, growers use this opportunity as a powerful marketing tool to gain exposure and show their most impressive products to industry members and expert judges. The winners of Best in Show, Best in Class and Blue Ribbon will be featured in the November 2007 Floral Management magazine and invited to participate in the AIFD 2008 display.
Chad Nelson, Eufloria Flowers, Nipomo, Calif., and winner of Best in Show at the 2006 Outstanding Varieties Competition, stated, “ It is a great promotion opportunity…It definitely brings attention to your business.”
Jody Whitekus, Golden Flowers, Miami, Fla. agreed: "It’s a great competition to enter because you can use whatever victory you have in your marketing materials." Golden Flowers’ dianthus ‘Rum,’ won Best in Class at the 2006 Outstanding Varieties Competition. Whitekus also pointed out that merely entering the competition gives growers a chance to display their product and gain lots of exposure.
There are 12 different categories judged in the competition. The categories for cut flowers include: Roses, Spray Roses, Dianthus, Chrysanthemum, Bulb Flower, Alstroemeria, Gerbera and others. Other categories are: Potted Flowering Plant, Potted Foliage Plant and Bedding Plant.
Each variety is judged on: color and commercial appeal; stem and foliage; bloom form; bloom size and overall quality/presentation. Three teams of judges, made of growers, wholesalers and retailers will determine winning products.