Jun 19, 2024
Tree fruit nurseries group updated at annual meeting

An international group representing fruit tree nurseries and orchardists recently hosted its yearly meeting.

The Associated International Group of Nurseries (AIGN), now 12 members strong, gathered in France the last week of May for their 2024 annual general meeting.

Associated International Group of Nurseries AIGN


Based in Yakima, Washington, the organization represents nurseries that propagate tree fruit for conventional and organic production.

The meeting’s host company, Star Fruits, arranged several pre-meeting activities and events in Paris, prior to the group commencing the week-long agenda in the city of Avignon.

This year’s theme, “Moving ahead during difficult times,” was used as a catalyst for discussion about how the 36-year-old company can continue to adapt and evolve during these uncertain times, according to a news release.

“The consequences of climate change on fruit growing are just beginning to unfold,” Gavin Porter, AIGN’s CEO, said in the release. “AIGN recognizes the urgency to help orchardists address these challenges by seeking out and supporting the development of new rootstocks and fruit varieties with greater tolerance to warmer growing areas, and being prepared to commercialize them when the tide of the economic downturn changes.”

The assembly featured an educational segment for the directors with a day devoted to a site visit to SICASOV, where AIGN’s members learned about their work with Global Gap, and how they ensure fruits are legal from an IP perspective.

Associated International Group of Nurseries AIGN


This was followed by a presentation from representatives of Naktuinbouw, the high health facility in the Netherlands and their affiliated organizations.

One of AIGN’s strengths is their global member-network, which allows the company to distribute plant materials on a broad scale for testing and evaluation prior to commercial release. Before distribution of a cultivar can take place, however, all materials are required to undergo evaluation by a Clean Plant Center, where the plants must be certified as disease and pathogen free, and affirmed as meeting the phytosanitary requirements of the destination country, according to the release.

In recent years, AIGN has come to rely on Naktuinbouw to clean and certify plant materials due to their efficiency and exceptional communication practices. Therefore, it was of great interest to the members to gain a better understanding of Naktuinbouw’s operations, according to the release.

The meeting closed with plans underway to meet in spring of 2025 in Santiago, Chile. AIGN member Viveros Requinoa of LTDA will host the event.

AIGN internationally has developed and introduced new rootstocks and varieties of deciduous trees for more than 35 years. The organization specializes in global management of intellectual property, utilizing their relationships with the leading plant breeders to secure propagation rights for new varieties, extensively testing, evaluating and marketing new products that benefit nursery owners and stakeholders.

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