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A deep dive into production, marketing and innovation in the topfruit industry and a glimpse at the fresh produce managers of tomorrow are the focus of a dedicated stage at FPJ Live on 6 October.

In a unique collaboration, FPJ and the National Fruit Show are coming together to offer a topfruit programme packed full of insight, analysis and conversation with some of the leading figures in the UK industry.

In the week that British Apples & Pears officially launches the domestic season, executive chair Ali Capper and operations director Sarah Calcutt will discuss the season ahead and how the industry body plans to maximise the opportunity for British growers. It comes against the backdrop of ambitious targets to increase the domestic share of the market.

A panel debate including Capper, Booths fruit buyer David Morris and others will consider the big issues facing the trade, including labour, Brexit, Covid buying trends and how retailers are supporting the category.

Switching the attention to growers, James Simpson from Adrian Scripps will look at production issues, while Antony Yousefian from Bardsley X will show delegates some of the cutting-edge technology being trialled by the innovative Kent producer.

On marketing, Worldwide Fruit chief executive Steve Maxwell will discuss the proliferation of brands in the apple category and what it takes to stand out from the crowd, while Raquel Herce from international marketing firm Mint will showcase some of the campaign strategies she has devised to promote topfruit brands across Europe.

Rounding things off with a look at the export markets, Matt Hancock from Norton Folgate and Love Fresh Cherries will explain how the cherry category is carving an impressive opportunity for itself overseas, in a presentation that will be of great interest to growers considering supplying the international markets.

In the afternoon, the spotlight moves to the fresh produce stars of tomorrow, with MDS chair Christine Tacon introducing a video series of 15 graduates from the market-leading management programme, who will tell us a bit about themselves, what they’ve got to offer and what they’ve learnt in their industry experiences so far.

FPJ Live 2020 will be delivered free online, and will be a mixture of live, interactive and video content. To register for your place, and to see the full programme for the day, visitwww.fpjlive.com.