LANGHAM, Sask. — The Ag in Motion farm show near set a new attendance record of 25,787, up 53 percent from last year.
There was also a drastic increase in exhibitor participation.
“In the first year of the show we had 200 exhibitors, the second year we had 302 and this year we had 409,” said show director Rob O’Connor.
The launch of the autonomous platform DOT turned out to be a show highlight as large crowds gathered to watch it move around and switch between seeding, spraying and seed tender modes.
There were also demonstrations that involved combines on a fall rye crop, tillage implements, sprayers, rock pulverisers, grain handling, new agricultural tire offerings and low stress cattle handling techniques.
Biotech, seed and crop input companies provided tours of their plots, which showcased the latest varieties and technologies. These were a major draw for farmers.
Ted Regier, who owns a small certified organic grain farm near Laird, Sask., said he grows varieties of fall rye and triticale that he was introduced to at Ag In Motion in previous years.
“The reason I do like the show is that we can see the different varieties, the newer varieties of grains, especially cereals and pulses that we do grow quite a bit of, and see how they actually perform in actual circumstances,” Regier said.
Danny Chescu was shuttled to the show from Roblin, Man., by Crop Protection Services, and he said it would take days of visiting plot tours to see the number of varieties grown at the show.
“Plots are good to see, they are,” he said. “It is a little disheartening to think I have such nice beans until I see the beans that are here. But at the same time, it is interesting to see new varieties and to talk to reps. I also was looking for a yard security system, and I found one here that I bought.”
David Lavenders, who raises cattle near Edam, Sask., said he was interested in the corn plots because he grows lots of the crop for feed. He is also interested in trying cover crops on his farm, so he was looking to see what crops work in this region.
“To take a day off haying to come here was not something I really wanted to do, but I’m glad I did in the end,” he said.
“I’m still going home to make hay until I’m done because it’s going to rain tomorrow.”
He also liked how the cattle handling equipment from different companies were laid out beside each other so they could be easily compared.
The show also had international visitors, which surprised O’Connor because it hadn’t been advertised outside the Prairies.
However, he said a goal for the show is to facilitate international business for its participants.
“We’re working with Saskatchewan Trade and Export Partnership on how to refine that in terms of what we need to offer to both those international visitors and the companies wanting to export to those countries,” O’Connor said.
He said show attendees can expect an even larger event next year because there has already been interest in more exhibitors who want to be part of the show.