Healy keynote speaker at BPOA conference

The BPOA is delighted to welcome Will Healy of Ball Horticultural Company as its keynote speaker to the Technical Seminar of this year’s annual conference, on 22nd January at Oxford Belfry Hotel.  

Will Healy, senior technical and research manager,Will has a vast experience over many years and a wide range of situations. He will relate his considerable, commercial experience to the topic of ‘Global Productions Trends- productivity in nurseries.’

Over the last 30 years, Will has developed innovative operational approaches and scheduling programs that reduce wastage, improve operational efficiencies with reduced crop times. Will works with Ball companies and customers throughout the world training their staff in cutting edge production practices.  As senior manager of technical services, Will is responsible for developing production programmes and operational efficiencies that produce consistent high quality young plants (plugs and liners). 



Will’s current research emphasis focuses on reducing waste throughout the supply chain from our seed and cutting producers all the way through our customers’ retail operations.  As growers move to performance based trading, managing wastage has become the new ‘ticket to play’ for growers at all levels.  Since waste must be evaluated holistically, Will has developed tools to optimize the product assortment; strategies that reduce buffer requirements; production techniques and process improvements to increase yields and grower training to improve uniformity and overall quality. 

A key to Ball’s success in young plant production has been the development of product standards and procedures to ensure consistent performance.  Working with growers, Will has developed protocols that ensure consistent supplies for customers.  These procedures involve operational, software and plant culture aspects since no one aspect will guarantee consistent supply.  Will has been actively involved with implementing SAP and Macola computer systems at Ball operations around the world.

As author of over 400 Ball Culture Advisors, Will is well versed in crop production.  Before coming to Ball, Will was a faculty member at the University of Maryland and Colorado State University where he published over 30 scientific publications on floriculture production.  Will received his PhD from the University of Minnesota working with Harold Wilkins, Professor Emeritus of Horticultural Science.