For three days, the town of Tullamore will again host Ireland’s largest exhibition of agricultural technology. From 17 to 19 September 2018, almost 300,000 visitors are expected to attend the National Ploughing Championships, which will host 1,700 Irish exhibitors over more than 600,000 square metres. The Enterprise Ireland Innovation Arena is at the heart of the event, along with an exciting ploughing competition. Products and solutions developed by Irish agricultural specialists will be presented to international visitors and the most innovative will be awarded.

Ireland has become a global centre for agritech innovation and the quality of its agricultural products and solutions is known around the world. Every year, the National Ploughing Championships provide an opportunity to learn about pioneering products and technologies developed by more than 100 leading Irish agritech companies, including machinery and software solutions that save time and drive efficiencies. Many of the companies exhibiting are implementing the latest findings from top researchers at Irish universities to shape the future of agriculture.

A special highlight of the event is the Enterprise Ireland Innovation Arena, which offers a snapshot of the expertise of Irish agritech companies. Almost 60 Irish companies will present new high-performance products for efficient livestock farming and agricultural practices. The best products will be awarded across fifteen categories. Exhibiting companies will explore partnership opportunities with more than 100 international agriculture professionals from all over the world, including Europe, North America, China, Russia, Saudi Arabia and Africa.

Irish agricultural technology in action
The range of solutions exhibited at the National Ploughing Championships spans the requirements of the entire agricultural sector. Ireland’s dairy industry, enjoying optimal conditions for grass and fodder production, has inspired the development of first-class grass harvesters that are in demand worldwide. The Irish agricultural machinery sector offers a high-quality range of innovative bale and wrapping systems, mowers and tedders. There are also robust and efficient zero grazing solutions, and powerful equipment for the handling of feed – including mixers, loaders and straw blowers. Special sensor-based collars for detecting rutting cows and monitoring bull activity are also attracting more and more users. In comparison, robots or drones are for now rarely used but will be be found more often on farms in the future. Milking robots are also becoming increasingly popular.

Exhibitors also specialise in aspects of animal health and welfare, crucial for driving efficiency and improving the quality of the food chain. Irish agronomy and the agritech industry have jointly developed solutions and equipment for livestock farming that are used worldwide. These include stable cabins, cow mats and the equipment of cattle stalls designed to support the health and safety of the animals.

Innovations in agriculture at the National Ploughing Championships
Sustainability is a hot topic across the sector. According to forecasts, the world population is expected to grow to around ten billion people by 2050. Farmers worldwide are using pesticides and fertilizers to meet this growing demand for food. At the same time, soil and biodiversity must be protected. Irish producers are leaders in nutrient management for both organic and chemical fertilizer spreaders. High-quality slurry tankers, combined with the latest techniques in umbilical and trailing shoe equipment are central requirements, as is chemical fertilisation using GPS and variable dosage. These Irish solutions deliver optimal plant nutrition while also protecting the environment.

Visitors to the National Ploughing Championships can see how this wide selection of highly specialized solutions work and get a snapshot of the future of agricultural technology.

Source: Irish Advantage 

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