As National Greenhouse Manufacturers Association’s President, I am proud to represent a great and growing industry. Our organization has taken a leading role in promoting best practices through education and networking. We also work diligently on behalf of not just our members, but the entire greenhouse manufacturing trade on building codes and standards.
Sharing knowledge and passion about their industry, NGMA members took every opportunity to listen and learn at the organization’s annual Spring Meeting held in April in San Diego, California. The meeting gave attendees the opportunity to assemble as a collective group to discuss, collaborate and educate ourselves on topics that directly affect our industry. We heard presentations on topics like: Construction Contracts, Risks and Insurance; Fan Energy Regulation; and State-of-the-Art Supplemental Lighting for Controlled Environments. There was also a session on the key aspects of greenhouse lighting from both a practical and technical perspective.
During the past few years, our Codes and Standards Committee has worked tirelessly updating the greenhouse definitions in the IBC Building Codes. It is exciting to see the NGMA code sponsored changes are now in use as the 2018 IBC gets adopted by different jurisdictions. Specifically, a reclassification of greenhouses in the code specific to its use, a 60 percent-plus increase in allowable square footage for a greenhouse before sprinklers and other fire protection systems are required. Additionally, and what should be considered a huge victory, a specific greenhouse definition and a section were added within the codes for future greenhouse regulatory clarifications.
As we move forward, our attention will turn to the Energy Codes changes being proposed and begin the 2021 structural review. Our influence in this area is vital to our industry. As an organization, we want to ensure that modifications to code guidelines will not have an adverse effect or place unrealistic demands on growers.
For 2018, our Communication Committee plans to roll out a new website that has improved functionality and easy user interface. It also plans to offer webinars featuring NGMA speakers, who will speak on a variety of industry topics, as well as promote the value of the NGMA and its members.
I want to personally thank the many volunteers who contribute to the success of NGMA. We have made progress with various initiatives, and I look forward to continuing to serve as President in 2018.
President & CEO
Atlas Manufacturing, Inc.