Great Lakes Ag Tech Summit


Join Urban Ag News, Hort Americas and Current, powered by GE, for the inaugural Great Lakes Ag Tech Summit on September 23. The summit will be held at at the historic Nela Park campus in Cleveland, Ohio.

The one-day event features keynote presentations and panel discussions from leading researchers and innovative growers in the Great Lakes region. Attendees will be able to connect with growers, scientists, researchers and entrepreneurs as we shape the future of food and move controlled environment agriculture forward.


Optimizing Plant Production Under a Controlled Environment – Research and Education Programs at the Ohio State University

Dr. Chieri Kubota – The Ohio State University

Dr. Kubota’s research mission is to serve in the development of science and technology in the area of controlled environment agriculture (CEA). Her projects are in an interdisciplinary area that encompasses plant physiology and horticultural engineering to enhance understanding and efficiency of CEA plant production systems such as greenhouses, warehouses (vertical farms), and growth chambers.

Are Consumers and Growers Putting Dollars in the Local Food Industry? Insights on Technologies and Preferences

Dr. Ariana Torres – Purdue University

Dr. Torres’ background combines field experience in agriculture with theoretical and applied research on agricultural economics. She has worked on projects looking at the impact of marketing choices on technology adoption for fruit and vegetable growers; the economic implications of social capital on entrepreneurship; and the role of community support on the resilience of small business after disasters.

Dr. Torres uses economic analysis to support the economic viability of the horticulture industry. Her research focuses on the intersection between the horticulture industry and marketing decisions. Her goal is to conduct innovative outreach and applied research in specialty crops marketing, with the end of promoting economic sustainability for horticultural businesses.

Dr. Torres is currently working on a project evaluating the market, economics, and potential barriers to produce export-quality dried apricots from smallholders of southern Tajikistan. She is also working on evaluating the adoption of a solar dehydrator for selected dried specialty crops in Indiana and Georgia. Lastly, she is collecting foundational data and establishing long-term pricing reports for Indiana farmers markets.

Vertical Farm Production of Young Plants, From Hemp to Tomatoes

John Jackson – Sustainable Indoor Growing Systems, Inc.

John is the CEO of Sustainable Indoor Growing Systems, Inc. (SIGS) born from an USDA funded industry-academic partnership with Grafted Growers, the University of Arizona, and North Carolina State University. John is an award-winning entrepreneur and University of Arizona alum with an MBA from the Eller College of Management. John has successfully launched investor and grant funded businesses and operated tech based companies to early stage revenue. Born in Compton, California, John continues his grandfather’s legacy as a sharecropper of tomatoes in rural Texas.

SIGS gives plants what they need to express the features that the market wants.

Sustainable Indoor Growing Systems, Inc. (SIGS) is a clean agricultural technology company that uses controlled environment agriculture to induce young generic plants to express enhanced physiological traits customers want – while increasing the economics of propagation. This is made possible by scientific discovery and development of unique growing recipes which are learned and enabled only by the SIGS multi-layered growing platform and architecture.

About Urban Ag News
The mission of Urban Ag News is to be the leading science communicator for the commercial hydroponics, greenhouse vegetable, vertical farming and urban agriculture industries. Urban Ag News educates readers and provide an understanding of the industry’s latest technologies and luminaries.

About Current, powered by GE
Current, powered by GE, offers cutting-edge innovations in horticultural lighting. We’ve spent years perfecting our lighting technology and working with growers, systems integrators and plant scientists to establish the specific needs of the horticulture industry. The result? LED grow systems that maximize the potential of greenhouses and indoor farms by enabling efficient growth at an industrial scale.


The Institute at Nela Park

1975 Noble Rd. Cleveland, OH 44112


Monday, September 23, 2019
9 am to 4pm

Agenda to be posted soon.

Early bird admission price is $30 if registration occurs before Sept. 16.
Regular admission: $50


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