LONDON, Ohio – In September of 1963, the inaugural launch of Farm Science Review demonstrated the "revolutionary" concept of no-till corn. Forty-eight years later, farmers are still being introduced to the latest in technology and ag production methods.
The field demonstrations, which showcase farm equipment and promote the latest in harvesting, drying, storing and handling field crops, are one of the gems of Farm Science Review's offerings. Quietly talked about yet highly anticipated by attendees, the field demonstrations set Farm Science Review apart from most other farm shows across the nation.
Farm Science Review, Ohio's premiere agricultural event, will be held Sept. 21-23 at the Molly Caren Agricultural Center in London, Ohio. The event is sponsored by Ohio State University's College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, Ohio State University Extension, and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.
The field demonstrations, held throughout the three-day event over a four-hour period each day, attract thousands of individuals who patiently stand in line to catch shuttles waiting to take them to various field demonstration areas.
"Farm Science Review has the most comprehensive field demonstrations of any farm show in the country," said Chuck Gamble, Farm Science Review manager.
The field demonstrations cover 600 acres of corn and soybean harvest, tillage and conservation tillage methods, manure application, variable rate technology, GPS technology, drainage installation, and other ag production methods. Over 30 farm machinery companies across the United States and Canada conduct the demonstrations using the newest equipment and the latest technology they have to offer.
"When farmers visit Farm Science Review they see field demo equipment operating that they might not have the opportunity to see at other farm shows, or get the opportunity to demo in their own fields," said Farm Science Review assistant manager Matt Sullivan. "That's what makes the field demonstrations so special. A farmer can see the equipment run in the field, get up close and personal with the piece, and if they like what they see, they can go right to that exhibitor's booth on the grounds and purchase the equipment."
Sullivan said that the diversity of farm companies and equipment in the field is what makes the field demonstrations a popular attraction for show visitors.
"There could be six or seven combines out there, 20 pieces of tillage, six or seven manure handling and spreading equipment, and eight or nine different types of GPS equipment," said Sullivan. "The field demonstrations are an outlet to showcase the technology, as well as provide an avenue for the farmer and the exhibitor to develop a business relationship."
The partnerships Farm Science Review organizers cultivate with both farmers and exhibitors are an important aspect of the continued success of the field demonstrations.
"Through the field demonstrations, we are helping farmers make connections with the companies, and from a business standpoint the return on the investment is huge," said Sullivan. "If an exhibitor can capture sales at the show from the field demonstrations and several leads, that's a huge success for the farmer and the business. There are companies who sold equipment six months after the show simply because someone saw the equipment perform at Farm Science Review."
The field demonstrations, with their long history and integral part of Farm Science Review, have aided farmers in staying in step with changes in agriculture.
The schedule for this year's field demonstrations can be found at http://fsr.osu.edu/schedule.html.
Farm Science Review pre-show tickets are now on sale for $5 at all OSU Extension county offices. Tickets will also be available at local agribusinesses. Tickets are $8 at the gate. Children 5 and younger are admitted free. Hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 21-22 and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 23.
For more information, log on to http://fsr.osu.edu. For the latest news and updates, follow Farm Science Review on Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/OhioStateFSR), Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/FarmScienceReview), and Ning (http://fsrosu.ning.com).