When you walk around the Farm Progress Show, it’s hard not to notice a bevy of languages and international visitors, as farmers from all over the world come to check out the latest in agricultural technology. Recently, FPS staff jetted off to the Southern Hemisphere to do the same.
Matt Jungmann, Penton Ag national events manager, and Don Tourte, Penton Ag vice president, attended Brazil’s Agrishow, held in April near Ribeirao Preto, Brazil, with a focus on soybeans, sugar cane and coffee. Informa is the parent company of both the Farm Progress Show and Agrishow.
“When Informa bought Farm Progress, this was the only other farm show that Informa owned. This is our sister show,” Jungmann explains, adding that Agrishow staff will attend FPS, too.
Jungmann reports that the five-day show was, like FPS, a lot to take in. “It took a day and a half to walk it all at once,” he says.
“They are very, very kind people. We had a really great experience with the people,” Jungmann adds. “Not just our co-workers but the farmers who were there, too. Our Midwestern farmers would fit in well down there.”
Here, Jungmann shares what they learned and what they might try out back home.
What did you attend and why? Agrishow is the name of the event. It’s the Brazilian version of the Farm Progress Show. It has field demonstrations, and it’s their largest outdoor trade show. It’s the only farm show in Brazil that gets corporate support from major companies like John Deere, Case IH and others.
Their crops are primarily soybeans, sugar cane, tomatoes, citrus and coffee, and the show hits all those really well.
How big is Agrishow? Between the language barrier and the hectare conversions, we were always on our phones trying to figure it out! Their exhibit field with ride-and-drives is the same size as the FPS Ride ‘n’ Drive. They are more efficient with parking because they have smaller vehicles — no three-quarter-ton trucks there.
Their field demos are much smaller — about 80 acres, where we’ve got 300 acres of field demonstrations.
What was your immediate takeaway? With my farmer hat on, it was cool to see the Brazilian version of the Farm Progress Show, to see the overlap with U.S. companies. Plus, to see niche coffee harvesting equipment and sugar cane planting.
With my farm show hat, I saw a number of things we do better and a number they do better. I learned a lot. Don and I were walking around in our blue and white FPS shirts, and people would stop us in the streets and tell us they want to go there someday. The Farm Progress Show is very well known there.
We walked into the Brazilian Precision Planting exhibit and it was just wild.
Jose, the Brazilian version of me, told me, “Everyone says, ‘My show is different!’ But you and me, my friend, my show really is different!”
What was different there? The way these Brazilian companies do exhibits is just beautiful. It’s above and beyond. It’s crazy how nice these exhibits are. The ride-and-drives are amazing, and they’ve put so much work into their ride-and-drives. They build terrain that’s much more extensive and steep and rugged. It’s pretty impressive.
They also had a whole segment of the show dedicated to airplanes and helicopters. A lot of farms in Brazil are of the size that they would require either an airplane or helicopter.
What was different about their ride-and-drives? They set up steep terrain, and it’s really well thought out. One of the hill climbs was covered in rocks with water running over it. It would be a challenge for anything to drive up this thing. We were seeing Volkswagen pickup trucks, Rolls Royce semis — different brands.
What did you look at that you’d never thought of before? They have a really, really nice, fancy restaurant in the middle of the show — white napkins, table service and the whole shebang. I’m not sure if it will fly here, but I think it’s worth a try.
They do a good job handling admissions. They also do a good job branding.
Given that Agrishow and FPS share a parent company, do you see opportunities to work together? We saw almost no American farmers there, mostly because it was the middle of April. But for some of our exhibitors, they may be interested in having conversations with Brazilian farmers. We do see opportunities to do things together. Each of us is the biggest thing going in our regions, so it’s cool to be owned by the same outfit.
Hosted by Prairie Farmer, the Farm Progress Show will be held in Decatur, Ill., on Aug. 29-31.