Expo 2016 Antalya Opens With World Class Ceremony

Expo 2016 Antalya, an A1 International Horticultural Exhibition being hosted by Antalya, Turkey, was officially opened to the public on April 23, 2016 in a grand ceremony.

The Expo is recognized by the International Association of Horticultural Producers (AIPH), an international organization dedicated to promoting horticultural producers and holding international garden / flora expositions worldwide.

Horticulture, in layman terms, is a branch of agriculture that deals with production and marketing of fruits, vegetables, flowers and ornamental plants.

The motto of the Expo 2016 is “A Green World for the Next Generation” to promote sustainable and green living in the world.

President of the AIPH, Bernard Oosterom, congratulated Turkey on creating a spectacular Expo during his speech at the Opening Ceremony on 22 April.

Speaking alongside President Erdogan and Prime Minister Davutloglu of Turkey, Secretary General of the BIE and ambassadors from around the world, Mr. Oosterom addressed the 5,000 guests and TV audiences telling them, “This Expo has brought together the horticulture industry, countries and their governments from all over the world around themes designed to promote ‘a green life for future generations’.

Visitors will be able to immerse themselves in the wonder of plants and flowers and learn for themselves that plants and green cities are vital components of life today.”

Over 60 countries (including India), institutions and Turkish municipalities are participating in the Expo, which attracted over 35,000 visitors on the first day itself.

AIPH approval is necessary for any country organizing an International Horticultural Exhibition to which other countries will be invited to participate. Expo 2016 Antalya was approved by AIPH in 2008.

The AIPH also grades these expositions based on their duration. The A1 grade of this Expo indicates that it is an international exhibition of long duration. Visitors from around the world have until 30 October to visit the 125 hectare Expo site.

Alongside the different country gardens, developed in association with many AIPH members, there is also an amazing display of mosaiculture exhibits. The organizers have also planned many other live events and attractions which are expected to attract millions of visitors in this popular tourist area.

This is the first major international event hosted in Turkey and will certainly pave the way for other such events here in the future.

President of the Turkish Ornamental Plant and Products Exporters Association and AIPH Board Member, Osman Bagdatlioglu was involved in initiating the Expo back in 2008.  Following the opening ceremony he said, “I am so pleased to see the result of many years hard work. Antalya has the potential for major expansion in the international trade in ornamentals. This Expo helps to put us on the world horticulture map and the industry will use this to promote further growth.”

Talking about horticulture, India is one of the topmost producers of horticulture products and exports a lot of its produce to other economies.

However, due to lack of adequate storage and transportation, around 30-40 per cent of the total annual produce is wasted.

The silver lining is that Indian states have, over the past years, demanded funds to improve upon horticulture, showing their rising interest in the same.

Horticulture is a very important sector in farming, considering the huge farming population that is involved in it, and needs better policies by the government to improve upon it.

Kanupriya Tewari

Kanupriya Tewari is a graduate from the University of Delhi and is deeply interested in issues related to music, agriculture, environment and alternative technology.

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