Voting is Open to Help PMA Bring Farmers’ Side of the Story to SXSW

Newark, DE – The Produce Marketing Association (PMA) announced it is looking to join the education lineup at South by Southwest (SXSW) for the second year and is seeking support from the industry to vote now. The session, The Farmers Behind your Fresh Food, will feature PMA vice president of technology, Vonnie Estes; Casey Cox, vice president at Longleaf Fridge Farms; Henry Gordon-Smith, founder and managing director at Agritecture Consulting; and Brian Talley, owner and winegrower at Talley Vineyards. 

SXSW has become a focal point for culture, branding, technology, entertainment, and food. Keynote speakers from last year ranged from the founders of Instagram to former speaker of the house John Boehner. The 10-day experience includes education sessions, networking, engaging activations, and entertainment.

“SXSW is one of the best places to learn what global cultural influencers and business leaders are thinking and saying,” says PMA chief marketing officer, Lauren M. Scott. “They are there talking about us, and so it is important to break into those conversations and share what we as an industry give to the world. I’m excited that we have a chance to come back and tell more true stories about where our food comes from.”

Over the past two years, PMA has been present at SXSW, with their first official education session taking place last year.  In addition to the education session, PMA has hosted the Global Street Farm, an activation taking place on popular Rainey Street featuring fresh produce and floral in interactive and engaging ways. Guests to the Global Street Farm have been able to snack on edible centerpieces, have flowers braided into their hair, and learn about including produce in their wellness routines all while listening to new music at the festival hot spot.

“The audience at SXSW is unique to any other event throughout the year,” said Vonnie Estes, vice president of technology at PMA who is also the moderator for PMA’s proposed session. “It’s one of the only places where thought leaders in all aspects of technology, food, health, culture, and event entertainment are all mingling with our consumers. The conversations that happen here can change the way our industry is seen and that’s what we hope to do with our session: start a conversation between farmers and consumers.  We want our consumers to learn about the innovative, healthy, and sustainable ways we’re feeding the world.”

According to the session video, Vonnie and the panelists know that consumers want to know more about their food than ever before including how their food is grown, where its grown, and who is growing it.  The session will give the farmers a chance to share that not only do they want the same thing as consumers, but they will also share the ways the industry is using technology and ingenuity to grow healthy and delicious food in a safe and sustainable way.

Vote now through August 23rd on the SXSW Panel Picker website.

About Produce Marketing Association

Produce Marketing Association (PMA) is the leading trade association representing companies from every segment of the global produce and floral supply chain. PMA helps members grow by providing connections that expand business opportunities and increase sales and consumption. For more information, visit