Exhibitors are looking forward to seeing farmers again
By Diego Flammini
One of the Ontario ag community’s popular events is welcoming back guests for the first time since 2020.
Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show returns as an in-person experience this September since the COVID-19 pandemic forced organizers to shift to a digital format for the shows in 2020 and 2021.
The show, scheduled for Sept. 13, 14 and 15, at the Discovery Farm in Woodstock, Ont., will include the field and livestock demonstrations, plot tours, product displays and events the farm show has become known for.
“We are looking forward to hosting the farm community in a celebration of ag,” Doug Wagner, president of Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show, said in a statement. “We are proud of how we’ve stayed in touch through our online events and smaller trade shows the last few years, but there’s nothing like the excitement of a large in-person event.”
Exhibitors are ready to have face-to-face interactions with farmers again.
“We’re excited to spend time with customers in person again,” Jason Leitch, BASF’s Eastern Canadian sales manager, agricultural solutions, told Farms.com. “Certainly, virtual meetings have been a valuable tool during the pandemic, and they’re great for sharing information. but nothing compares to those face-to-face, back and forth conversations you have with farmers.”
The virtual meetings over the last few years will help exhibitors like BASF tailor their information during the show.
Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show is a busy event, and an exhibitor may only have a few moments with a farmer, so those minutes need to count, Leitch said.
“Nobody wants to waste their time, whether that’s in front of a screen or in person,” he said. “What the virtual solutions have taught us is how to deliver the key points in the most efficient manner, so even if the conversation is only five minutes long, that customer has as much necessary information as they need.”
Being back at the farm show in person will also allow exhibitors to bring customers up to speed about new products.
Case IH, for example, has made updates and introduced new tractor products for farmers.
Seeing the equipment on a screen doesn’t compare to the sensory experience of climbing into the cab, said Robert Meier, territory sales manager for Central and Eastern Ontario.
“Farmers like to see, touch and feel equipment,” he told Farms.com. “We have new equipment we’re excited to show. We’ve got new Farmall Utility A tractors, new Vestrum tractors and we made upgrades to our Optum and Puma tractors. So, when a farmer visits us at the show, they’ll have basically two years of products to learn about.”