Heidi Wernett is an American entrepreneur and international floriculture industry expert. She has over thirty years of experience doing business in Asia. After initially starting out in Japan, Heidi settled in Kunming, China in 1995 where she set up a US-Sino flower training center; sponsoring the first commercial flower trials ever conducted in China.
“Dr. Heidi” is recognized in China as one of the founding pioneers of its commercial flower industry. Recipient of the China National Friendship Medal (highest award to foreign experts by the State Council) and advisor to the Yunnan Province flower industry, Heidi has introduced many new cut flower varieties along with modern seedling technology to growers in China. Also, Dr. Heidi championed year-round production and sales of red poinsettias by strategically promoting them for China’s National Day, October 1st—big and red, poinsettias are one of China’s favorite potted plants today!
Business owner and president of China Horticultural Business Services L.L.C, an agribusiness consultancy specializing in market development and trade in Asia since 1997, Dr. Heidi Wernett has organized exhibitions and product training workshops for companies interested to develop their business in Asia. Alternatively, Wernett directed a market entry promotion program for Japanese flowers in North America funded by the government of Japan to develop farm exports. In 2018, she completed an assessment report for the USDA/Foreign Agriculture Service on US Flower & Plant Exports to China.
Dr. Heidi Wernett is a noted speaker and authority on floriculture trends in the Indo-Asia Pacific region. She provides consulting to governments, organizations, and private companies on floriculture industry development, and offers training on postharvest care & handling, greenhouse production technologies, variety introductions and floral marketing. Dr. Wernett has conducted floriculture market research in over 25 countries and consulted for the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, U.N./Food & Agriculture Organization, and USAID on floriculture development in Asia, Africa, Middle East and Mexico.
Heidi Wernett grew up in Los Angeles, California, not far from the LA Wholesale Flower Market. After graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in liberal arts from St. John’s College in New Mexico, where she studied Ancient Greek and Astronomy, she earned her Master’s degree in plant breeding and genetics from Penn State University and was responsible for conducting flower trial evaluations on potted plants. Crossing over to the cut flower industry, Heidi initiated the research program on improving postharvest longevity in gerbera for her Ph.D. degree from the University of Florida. Before launching her career in Asia, Heidi worked in the US floral retail and wholesale sector of the industry at Publix and Albertson’s supermarkets and Gourmet Bouquet, plus 3 years as a street corner flower vendor during graduate school, working her way up to selling 450 carnations/hour for 25 cents each on Friday afternoons. Passionate about customer service, Heidi received a “Service First” award from Albertson’s for increasing weekly gross floral dept. sales 35 percent within her first month of employment.