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Editor's note: we invited the media that cover the North Americam fruit and vegetable markets to provide an update on the marketplace and their services. Here are the comments from those who chose to participate.

Timely production-focused insight, trends, news, and solutions growers need, coming from a balanced blend of expert editors, growers and research-ers regularly sent to a fruit circulation of 34,000 and vegetable circulation of 27,000.

That's what makes American Fruit Grower magazine, now in its 126th year, its sister publication, Western Fruit Grower, and American Vegetable Grower magazine - entering its 100th year - the established national voices for America's fruit and vegetable producers, says Joe Monahan, Managing Dir for the National Horticulture Group at its parent company, Meister Media Worldwide. He says they are building on that legacy with new services.

"Our people work hard to make sure our publications stay active in the industries they serve," says Monahan, pointing to two new initiatives recently launched as examples. "American/Western Fruit Grower's CROP Initiative and American Vegetable Grower's SEED Initiative recognize the challenges of today, and work with growers to identify real solutions."

Group Editor Richard Jones says the initiatives are designed to be truly interactive, combining print, digital, and in-person elements to engage growers in a deeper dialog about what's ahead for their industry and develop actionable ideas that growers can use to assure profit and success.

In addition to the regular monthly magazines, American Fruit Grower's weekly e-newsletter, Heard Down the Row and American Vegetable Grower's bi-weekly e-newsletter, VegWire Online, communicate with growers throughout the month providing up-to-the-minute news and analysis, addressing the critical issues that are important to our readers.

Fruit and vegetable production is big in the states of Florida, Georgia and Alabama, the 'deep southeast.'
Southeast AgNet remains Florida's only native agriculture media company. Born and raised in a Florida vegetable farming family, I founded the state's only farm network in 1984 with backing of a few dozen farmers, most of them citrus and vegetable producers. Broadcasts were expanded into Georgia and Alabama in 1990 and today 65 radio stations air several Southeast AgNet broadcasts each weekday. The broadcasts are customized for each state's farm listeners.

Southeast AgNet became a bona-fide multi-media operation in early 2005 with the purchase of two major media entities steeped in Florida citrus history. The monthly Citrus Industry Magazine has been published continuously for 80-plus years by the Frisbie family of Bartow, FL. The world's largest citrus industry seminar and trade show program, Citrus Expo, now in its fifteenth year, was held last month in Ft. Myers, FL.

We also continue to steadily expand Internet services for this region's agriculture interests. First in the region to operate a "blog" Web site for daily headlines archiving, we also expect to air our first "podcast" by the time this article is published.

For people in the fresh fruit and vegetable industry, reading The Packer every week has been a ritual passed down from one generation to the next for well over 100 years. And that relationship with our readers has spawned a unique family of other publications and properties - all part of the food360ยบ division of

The Packer's family tree includes Citrus & Vegetable, Greenbook, Fresh Trends, The Guide, the Grower, Produce Merchandising, Online Newsbreak, Packer Online Extra, Red Book Credit Services, Red Book's Industry Insider and Market Update.

The Packer is read by retailers, produce wholesalers, growers, shippers, packers, foodservice distributors/
operators and companies providing transportation services. It's where they come for news and information about the fresh fruit and vegetable industry. Our other publications and services drill down deeper in one or more of those audiences to help satisfy their specialized information needs. For example, Produce Merchandising views the industry from a retailer point of view.

If you ate it for breakfast, lunch or dinner, it was probably grown as one of the 350 commercial crops in California and Arizona. From artichokes to zucchini, and everything in between, Western Farm Press covers the world's fifth largest agricultural economy and America's largest, most dynamic, and most diverse agricultural state.

The total farmgate value for specialty crops in the U.S. is about $53 billion, almost half of the total value of American agricultural production, according to the California Department of Food and Agriculture Secy A. G. Kawamura, a produce grower and shipper from Orange County in the heart of the southern California. California and Arizona generate 40% of this specialty crop value, about $20 billion annually.

Western Farm Press, published for more than a quarter of a century, is the youngest of the four Farm Press titles, but its editorial foundation follows the company's flagship publication, the 64-year-old Delta Farm Press, by devoting its total focus to reporting on production agriculture.

Editor Harry Cline and Chief Contributing Correspondent and Former Editor Dan Bryant have reported on Western agriculture for a combined total of more than 70 years. "It is the most dynamic agricultural economy in the world," says Cline, "and it's ever-changing as producers selected from literally hundreds of crop options.

We are the West's vertical magazine publishing company that growers of fruits and vegetables have come to rely on. Our titles, American Vineyard, Pacific Nut Producer and Vegetables West, target super high value crops enjoyed by consumers throughout the world.

All of our crop specific magazines have identified the important Pest Control Advisors (PCAs) that work closely with growers. These professionals monitor crops and make recommendations to maintain crop quality.

American Vineyard is the re-spected voice of the grape industry and read by more than 10,000 growers and PCAs of wine, raisin and table grapes throughout the West.

Pacific Nut Producer is the authoritative voice of the nut industry and read by nearly 9,000 growers and PCAs producing almonds, walnuts, pistachios, hazelnuts, pecans and macadamia nuts.

Vegetables West magazine reaches the powerhouse of vegetable production in the West. Growers in these western states represent more than 50% of the total U.S. acres planted reflecting more then 70% of the entire U.S. vegetable crop value. Vegetables West is read by nearly 7,000 vegetable growers and PCAs.

Canada's fruit and vegetable regions are as diverse as the country is large: almost every region has production of some field and greenhouse vegetable crops as well as fruits of many kinds. The fruit sector is concentrated in the provinces of Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec and Nova Scotia, though other provinces also have some production.

The vegetable industry is similarly distributed across the country, but Ontario and Quebec are by far the largest producers, with fresh and process production.

Annex Publishing and Printing has several magazines that reach these markets in different ways:

Top Crop Manager's specialty edition, Potatoes in Canada is a documentary style magazine that features technical content and is published annually for the industry, read by 2,800 growers, shippers, dealers, processors and suppliers from coast to coast.

Fruit & Vegetable Magazine (F&VM) is a national publication that includes columns and features for all fruit and vegetable sectors in eight editions each year. F&VM has a circulation of more than 7,000 readers; the content focuses on helping farmers with production-based issues/problems.

Greenhouse Canada magazine covers both the hothouse vegetable and floriculture markets and is read by more than 4,200 growers and industry professionals across Canada. Published 12 times a year, it includes a Buyers' Guide in December and a convention issue in September that supports the Canadian Greenhouse Conference. Greenhouse Canada is the only national business magazine published exclusively for the commercial greenhouse grower in Canada. Each monthly issue includes grower profiles, research updates, industry news, a calendar of seminars and conferences, comprehensive new product listings, and the latest information on technology and innovations.

Together, these business magazines from Annex offer marketers several ways to reach what is collectively, one of Canada's largest crop production sectors. While they operate separately, they share the common goal of pertinent editorial content and high print quality.

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