Notes From Louisville

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For the big kid in me, there’s nothing more fun than mid-February. Each year at this time, the agricultural industry heads en mass for Louisville, KY, to attend the National Farm Machinery Show and Tractor Pull. According to the show organizers, this monster event – spread out over thousands of square feet of the Kentucky Exposition Center – attracts better than 300,000 visitors annually during its four-day run.

Now I spend many days each year getting to see various segments of agricultural equipment at outdoor trade shows and industry open houses. But nowhere else can I fully appreciate the vast scope of agriculture under one roof as at the National Farm Machinery Show. Front-end loaders, self-propelled sprayers, and all kinds of high-tech gadgets are around every bend and aisle.

Besides presenting a “one-stop shopping” experience for those in the ag industry, the National Farm Machinery Show normally provides a great gauge to how the upcoming season will play out. I’m happy to report that in 2010, most of the major equipment manufacturers are optimistic, expanding or upgrading their product lines in response. Look for more details on some of these specific products in the March/April edition of CropLife IRON magazine.

Finally, let me provide you with two other observations from this show. At the Miller-St. Nazianz booth, I was proud to see the company’s Condor G75 sprayer on display with a sign proclaiming it as the winner of the 2009 CropLife IRON Product of the Year Award. “We couldn’t pass up to opportunity to point out this honor to attendees here in Louisville,” said the company’s Todd Frish.

Then there was the new SX275 self-propelled sprayer from Buhler Versatile Inc. This red-colored unit features a 1,200-gallon product tank, a Cummins QSB6.7-liter/275 horsepower engine, and boom widths up to 120 feet. “We are looking for the SX275 to make a big splash into the custom application marketplace this year,” said Product Manager Grant Lien. “We’ve already had plenty of interest from folks walking by our booth here in Louisville.”

For the big kids in all of us, nothing pleases more than big IRON.

Sfiligoj is the Editor for both CropLife and CropLife IRON magazines. He travels regularly to cover industry events and has been dedicated to the ag retail industry since he joined the staff in 2000.

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