Listed below are opportunities and barriers that were identified by farmer groups. This 2010 summary list includes high-priority items that are applicable to research, outreach, and education of the type funded by NYFVI. For reports on specific aspects of the industry, click for Greenhouses or Nurseries.
· Better management and more efficient use of plant nutrients
· Resistant varieties that will lower pesticide utilization and improve performance
· Reduction of chemical use through predators, IPM, new spraying techniques, etc.
· Reduce labor use through automation/mechanization (e.g., shrubs in containers, sod harvesting, high tunnel, slow-release fertilizer, watering, material handling)
· Improved worker training (e.g. sanitation, language for non-English speakers, knowledge of growing things, pruning techniques)
· Farm level value added processing and packaging
· Getting a bigger piece of the consumer dollar through niche marketing, adding entertainment to the experience, more products or services
· Rising energy costs for greenhouses (cutting into seasons, viability of certain crops) and achieving greater energy efficiency through design and engineering