HARRISBURG - The Pennsylvania Landscape and Nursery Association has launched a new national association to represent green industry suppliers. The new association, the American Green Industry AssociationTM (AGIATM) will operate exclusively online, rolling out two online directories as its first member services.
The chairman of PLNA’s board of directors, Jim MacKenzie of Octoraro Native Plant Nursery said that creation of the new association fills a need that has long existed in the green industry.
"PLNA and other state and national associations have done a good job of representing the industry as a whole,” said MacKenzie. "But we saw a need for an organization that exclusively represents the perspective of the industry’s wholesale suppliers, just as we have associations that focus on landscape contractors and retail garden centers.”
"Our business model is exclusively online,” continued MacKenzie. "We want to use the Internet and technology to provide services to the wholesale suppliers in our industry. These directories are the first step in that direction.”
PLNA has heard from landscape contractors and garden centers that sourcing products and keeping up with rapidly changing product offerings is difficult and time consuming. Search engines on the Internet don’t always deliver the results desired. The two directories are each specifically built to target landscape contractors or garden centers, providing connections to suppliers that can meet their specific needs.
The directories in their present form are only the beginning. MacKenzie says there are plans for mobile versions, so that a landscape contractor who has problem in the field can use his smart phone to find a product to solve the problem. Planned future developments also include the ability to connect with suppliers to order product directly from the web.
PLNA has a full time sales staff reaching out to industry suppliers to enroll them in the directories and help them maximize their exposure on the directory sites. A basic listing on the directory is free to any green industry supplier, but upgrades to increase exposure are available. Membership in the new association is included with any directory listing upgrade.
MacKenzie said that he sees the new association as complementary to other state and national associations.
"We believe strongly in the role that associations play in the green industry,” said MacKenzie. "It is our hope that AGIA will become an essential piece of the green industry association fabric that is our national, state and regional green industry colleagues.”
For more information or to sign up for a free listing, go to the directories online or call PLNA at 800.898.3411.