Wednesday, 28 February 2024 15:55

Positive vibes ahead of field days

Written by  Peter Burke
Organisers of the Central District field days are promising a great event. Organisers of the Central District field days are promising a great event.

The biggest agricultural expo in the lower North Island, Central Districts Field Days, gets underway on March 14 and organisers are promising a great event.

Agriculture is at the heart of the region and the town of Feilding is seen as one of the most important agricultural hubs in the country. There is a wide range of farming and commercial growing enterprises serviced by the town which has a very large saleyard.

It is also the base for a whole range of companies that service the agri sector: banks, agricultural consultants, transport and contracting companies, veterinarians and a host of businesses selling a wide range of farm equipment.

Up to 500 exhibitors are expected to attend the three-day event - mainly local but also many from other parts of the country. While there is no actual theme for the event, the focus is very much on sustainability and innovation, as well as the usual exhibits and special activities for families. In essence there is something for everyone - farmers, families, and townsfolk who are keen to see what's new in the rural sector. For those looking for a new tractor or car or farm implement there will be a range of sites available to compare products. The organisers say they have a special cuisine pavilion which will feature local produce.

For those interested in technology, the AeroLab site offers a chance to see a whole range of automation which is now available to farmers.

This includes drones which can performa a variety of tasks and make light work of some challenging situations. Also, autonomous tractors and carts will feature and visitors to the field days can see demonstation of this equipment. To the farmer or grower such innovation is seen as one way of coping with labour shortages.

Another important feature of the field days is the showcasing of career opportunities in the agricultural sector. Many of the exhibitors will highlight career opportunities and there will be hands-on options also available.

CD Field Days 3 FBTW

Up to 500 exhibitors are expected to attend the three-day event.

The Young Farmers organisation will be among those present. This year organisers say there will be a new kids' zone to keep the children amused while the adults focus on some of the serious exhibits. The kids' zone will feature an inflatable bouncy castle ad a corn maze as well as other activities.

The RNZAF, based just a few kilometres away, will have a helicopter on site and children will have the chance to look over this machine and maybe think about a career in the military.

But for the organisers, one of the key features of CD Field Days is the fact that people who may not see each other a lot during the year can connect. It is both a social and business event.

Last year the event was held just after Cyclone Gabrielle that caused devastation along the east coast of the North Island. This year the organisers are hoping that more people will come over the hills to Feilding and take some time to relax and feel positive.

While the agri sector is facing some major challenges now, events like CD Field Days can shift a sometime negative mood into a positive one as people come face to face with a whole lot of positive solutions and innovations. CD 2024 promises to be another great event and an occasion to showcase all the positive things about NZ’s primary sector.

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