The Kansas Sweet potato Association was initiated by a group of growers in the Kansas River valley. It’s first meeting was in May 1939 in Lawrence, Kansas. A constitution and bylaws were adopted in November 1939 with all members who were also to be members of the Kansas State Horticultural Society. It was originally named the Kaw Valley Sweet potato Growers Association and was subsequently renamed the Kansas Sweet potato Growers Association in 1963.
The Kansas Vegetable Growers Association was founded in July 1965. Before, vegetable growers, like fruit growers, were highly influential in the Kansas Horticultural Society.
In 1968, the Kansas Sweet Potato Growers Association combined with the Kansas Vegetable Growers Association, using a new constitution and the bylaws of the Vegetable Growers Association.
In 1993, discussions were initiated with the Missouri Vegetable Growers Association to consider a possible joint educational meeting between the KVGA and MVGA. These discussions led to the inclusion of vegetable growers in Iowa and Nebraska. In 1995, it was decided to hold a 4-state vegetable growers conference in St. Joseph, Missouri. This conference would be the location of the educational requirement of the KVGA and it’s annual meeting would be held there. The Great Plains Vegetable Growers Conference has grown in size and content to include a 2-day educational program with additional workshops for High Tunnels, Farmers Markets, Community Supported Agriculture, and Beginning Vegetable Farmers. Today, it is supported by a trade show of vendors, associations and affiliates.
From the History of the Kansas State Horticultural Society
100 Year Report- 1967 (updated January, 2010, by Chuck Marr, KVGA Sec-Treas)