Thursday, February 11, 2010

World Ag

A great reminder that California is a major center of world agriculture is the World Ag Expo in Tulare, as reported by the Western Farm Press.

An excerpt.

“A long series of late January Pacific storms that dumped 4 to 6 inches of rain on the San Joaquin Valley should keep the all-important World Ag Expo water trucks parked Feb. 9-11 for the annual Tulare, Calif., farm show.

“Dust will not likely be a problem at the 43rd annual farm show at the International Agri Center.

“Water is the engine powering California agriculture that is coming off its third consecutive drought year. The train of wet, cold storms may not end the natural or judicial drought, but it sure is spawning optimism for the businesses of farming, dairying and ranching.

“On a clear day, the Sierra Nevada are visible from the show grounds. This year they will be spectacular and well snow-covered, a reminder to visitors that 2010 will surely be a better year for agriculture.

“This year’s Expo chairman, Bernie Cargle, said the storms have caused minimal problems with the show set-up. Some of the smaller tents recently erected blew over.

“Wind has been the problem early on. The rain has not yet,” said Cargle, adding, however, that continued wet weather will make setting up for exhibitors challenging.

“Overall, the show is shaping up as another exhibitor sellout. “We were at about 5 percent fewer spaces sold in late January this year compared to where we were at the same time last year. If we do not sell out, we will be pretty darn close by the time the gates open.

“There will be plenty for our visitors to see,” said the longtime farm show volunteer. Before he retired, Cargle spent many years as an exhibitor with his company, Case IH.

“Everyone has a positive outlook about the 2010 Expo,” said Cargle. “The rain we have had is creating optimism. We just hope we have three nice days for the show.”

“With three, bright sunny days for what is billed as the largest annual agricultural exhibition of its kind, more than 100,000 people will keep the 1,600 exhibitors busy as they prowl the 2.6 million square feet of show grounds looking for the latest in equipment, supplies and services.

“Powering Global Agriculture” is the theme for this year’s farm equipment show.”