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NEW FARM SHOWS!
INDIANA FARMFEST

New in 2005 is the Indiana Farmfest, a farm show dedicated to all of Indiana's producers. Produced by Cygnus Trade Shows, the inaugural event will be held September 13-15 in Tipton, Ind. The three-day event includes 140 acres of field demonstrations, private demonstration areas, livestock handling and horse training demos by Van Hargis, educational seminars, entertainment, a toy and craft tent and more.

In addition, Show Manager Darren Winfield estimates that 350 companies will display their products during the farm show.

Winfield says the Indiana Farmfest will be an excellent opportunity for agriculture marketers to showcase their products. For exhibitors who need "elbow room," the farm show offers jumbo display areas, measuring 250' wide by 150' deep. "In the jumbo space, a potential buyer can take a test drive and kick the tires without ever leaving a company's booth," says Winfield. This must be an attractive feature for marketers as Winfield says all of the show's jumbo display areas are sold out.

In addition to large outdoor display areas, Indiana Farmfest offers 10' by 10' display areas in an air-conditioned building, which is quite a luxury at farm shows.

However, the Indiana Farmfest is more than just a one-stop shopping trip for area producers. The show is teaming up with the Indiana Agricultural Leadership Institute and Indiana Agri-News to produce a conference on Sept. 15 called "Indiana Farmfest Ag Matters Day." The conference will focus on the newly formed Indiana State Department of Agriculture and will feature several key government officials including the newly appointed Director of Agriculture Andy Miller and Lieutenant Governor Becky Skillman.

Winfield says a biofuels panel is also on the agenda, featuring many industry leaders such as Mike Jackson, CEO of the Ag Business Group; Phil Lambert with the National Ethanol Vehicle Coalition; Charlie Smith, CEO of CountryMark Co-op; and Tom Verry with the National Biodiesel Board and Renewable Fuels Association. USDA Secretary Mike Johanns also has been invited to attend the event.

"We want the show to really focus on Indiana agriculture and prove that the Indiana Farmfest is a great venue to promote not only agriculture products but also the national and state farm policy agendas," Winfield concludes.

For more information on attending or exhibiting at the 2005 event, visit www.farmshows.com, or call 800/827-8007.

WORLD POTATO CONGRESS FARM SHOW

For several years the World Potato Congress has provided an opportunity for potato growers around the globe to collect the latest information and technology in the industry. A unique component to the 2006 Congress to be held in Boise, Idaho, is a three-day outdoor International Potato Equipment Exhibition and Farm Demonstration Show.

The World Potato Congress Farm Show, to be held Aug. 24-26, 2006, in Grand View, Idaho, will provide a rare hands-on view of a wide variety of equipment and crop management systems in the field and via active demonstrations and displays throughout the exhibition site. 

"This show is the first of its kind," says Mark Randal, co-owner of R&R Productions, which is producing the show. "The Congress is geared to education and this year attendees will have the additional opportunity to see technology and products firsthand during the farm show that follows."

Potato harvest and related field and handling demonstrations will take place each day of the farm show. In addition, hundreds of exhibitors will include major growers, processors and retailers; manufacturers of tractors, tillage, seeding, irrigation and processing equipment; storage building manufacturers; seed and crop protection companies; and USDA/ARS and university scientists exhibiting the most exciting new research results.

According to Randal, the field demonstrations will showcase new technology and genetic research such as disease-resistant and higher-yielding varieties as well as the promotion of diverse end-uses for the crop.

Tim O'Connor, president and CEO of the U.S. Potato Board, says potato producers need to begin shifting away from traditional potato end-uses. "From my vantage point, the potato industry needs to give consumers new reasons to move beyond the traditional potato meal, which will require new varieties.

"We hope to use a portion of the farm show to showcase interesting new varieties that are developed enough to begin growing without risk," O'Connor explains.

The 2006 Farm Show is a great chance for the U.S., as one of the top potato-producing countries in the world, to leave a lasting impression on the global potato industry. For more information on the World Potato Congress Farm Show visit www.potatofarmshow.com. AM


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