Prestigious AMHPAC Members Talk Advancement

Woltman de Vries, Rábago, & Díaz(Left to right) Óscar Woltman de Vries and Juan Ariel Reyes Rábago, Alfredo Díaz Belmontes)

The Mexican Association of Protected Agriculture (AMHPAC) hosted its 9th annual conference on August 24 – 26 in Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico, and it proved to be a success. Fifty exhibitors filled the exhibitor room floors spotlighting their products and services. This year’s conference yielded an increase of participants with a 10 percent year-over-year growth.

AMHPAC’s National Board of Directors 2016-2018 was announced at the conference. Juan Ariel Reyes Rábago, ex-president of AMHPAC, made a heart-felt farewell speech and committed to offering any additional support in the future to the endeavors of AMHPAC. Rábago also gave his eternal gratitude to the AMHPAC team/membership, Board of Directors, his family and the industry.

Óscar Woltman de Vries was named the new president of AMHPAC 2016-2018. Woltman de Vries served as secretary on the AMHPAC Board of Directors for three years and will take his new office with an efficient plan and strategy.

Rábago, Woltman de Vries, and Alfredo Díaz Belmontes (general manager at AMHPAC), recently spoke to PRODUCE BUSINESS regarding their transitions and future agendas.

Óscar Woltman de Vries,
Invernaderos Potosinos S.A. de C.V.
and New President of AMHPAC

PB: As AMHPAC’s new president, what do you see in the future for AMHPAC?

Woltman De Vries: To make AMHPAC sexy, let me explain. We need to analyze where AMHPAC is now, determine our economic, social and world-wide opportunities and challenges. I would like to see the association’s continued growth 5 to 10 years both nationally and internationally. I want to set and accomplish goals that transcend our organization to influence political and social issues, and advance the industry and grow globally.

My short-term goals are: First, finalize the analysis/plan within one year or less. Second, continue the successful work of the legal protection of the industry. Third, grow food safety programs that will help the producers reach their optimum level of success within the U.S. Market. Fourth, ground the market’s positioning of AMHPAC. We are eager to promote AMHPAC. We would like the industry to recognize AMHPAC members as socially responsible suppliers with quality products, meeting and superseding quality standards and certifications.

I am personally looking forward to these challenges, and I am confident that I can fulfill my goals. I have the energy level, and I look forward to working with my AMHPAC team.

Juan Ariel Reyes Rábago,
President of Invernaderos Potosinos S.A. de C.V.
and ex-President of AMHPAC

PB: You ushered AMHPAC through many advances during your tenure. What do you consider your top successes?

Rábago: There are many successes in AMHPAC, but just to name a few:

  • Collectively, we have been able to conserve the talent and the unity of AMHPAC.
  • Gleaned 48 new members in one year.
  • Maintained budgets, and I am leaving AMHPAC financially stable.
  • Opened doors to other markets and countries via The New York Produce Show and Conference as well as The London Produce Show and Conference.
  • Held successful AMHPAC conferences throughout Mexico, Puerto Vallarta, Los Cabos and Cancun.
  • Started a tradition of inviting family to the conferences; our businesses are family businesses, and AMHPAC is a family.

PB: What advice do you have for the next President?

Rábago: When I began my position, I took my job very seriously. It is just my strong character, but then I realized that AMHPAC is not mine. However, it is my job as the leader of AMHPAC to guide, grow and promote Mexico. Personally, I would like to give my eternal gratitude to my team-members at AMHPAC, AMHPAC members and the industry.

Alfredo Díaz Belmontes,
General Manager at AMHPAC

PB: What success have you seen at this year’s conference?

Belmontes: The positive attitude of everyone throughout the conference; the networking opportunities resulted in many successful meetings.

PB: How would you like to see AMHPAC grow within the next five years?

Belmontes: We obtained 48 additional members in one year. We are able to communicate the benefits of AMHPAC by talking one-on-one/person-to-person. Our objectives are to collaborate with top-decision makers to guide and to grow the association, to maintain our momentum, and to be recognized internationally as Mexico’s top association contributing to the success of our industry.