The Mid-Atlantic Nursery Trade Show brought springtime to Baltimore again this January for the 47th annual horticulture show. Covering 300,000+ square feet of contiguous exhibit space at the Baltimore Convention Center, the premier green industry marketplace for businesses took place January 11 – 13, 2017.
MANTS welcomed over 11,300 total registrants (including exhibitors) to this year’s show; this includes a record-breaking 10,000+ people who had registered by the end of the first day of the show alone. These attendees, who gathered to do business, network and learn about the newest green industry trends for 2017, had the opportunity to visit 952 exhibiting companies spread out over 1,536 booths. In addition to exhibitors, 3,600 non-exhibiting/buying companies were represented on the show floor.
“Everyone here at MANTS would like to thank our partners, hosts, sponsors, attendees and exhibitors for making 2017 another wonderful year on the MANTS floor,” said Vanessa Finney, Executive Vice President of MANTS. “This year’s show recorded the highest attendance in eight years and had an exhibitor retention rate of 93%; to me, these are indicators of the health of our country’s horticulture industry, from the source of input to final product sale. It also means that MANTS is achieving our mission to connect buyers with sellers to facilitate business. We felt a positive and enthusiastic flow of energy throughout this year’s show and hope this sets the tone for the industry in the remainder of 2017.”
Each year, people from across the country, and around the world, travel to Baltimore to take advantage of MANTS’ horticultural marketplace. In 2017, MANTS attracted attendees and exhibitors from 45 different states and representatives from 16 various countries (including the U.S.) and the territory of Micronesia. When asked why he travels from England to attend MANTS each year, Raymond Evison of Guernsey Clematis Nursery commented:
“For my business, I want to develop new contacts throughout the world and learned about MANTS through some of our customers. I’ve been to MANTS many times, at least the last 10 years. It is very convenient, some of our customers have booths here so I can meet with them and plan for the future. While we have the opportunity to communicate in various ways today, I think the best is to meet people physically, there’s nothing better than that, and MANTS gives us that opportunity.”
“It is always very interesting to see what new products are being developed but what I learned more about at this year’s show is how to develop the right social media contact with the consumer…the consumer base has changed.” Evison added, “being at the beginning of the year, I’ve always found its pulse to be a very good indicator of how the industry is feeling, and it is great to see and hear the buzz at this year’s show.”
MANTS continues to have a large economic impact on the city of Baltimore, bringing in thousands of out of town guests who enhance business for attractions like hotels and restaurants in an otherwise slow time of the year. In 2017, the show booked over 4,800 room nights at 11 Baltimore area hotels.
In 2018, MANTS will take place from January 10 – 12 at the Baltimore Convention Center.