Nampo 2017: Harvest Day excitement building

Nampo 2017: Harvest Day excitement building

Nampo 2017 is all set to be the best to date, the organisers report

Nampo Harvest Day is the country’s largest agricultural expo. It has a rich and successful history with the first event being held in 1967. Wim Venter, admin officer at Grain SA, has attended the exhibition an incredible 16 times. He gave FOCUS some of his predictions for Nampo 2017…

Farmers, agricultural businesses, manufacturers and industry innovators are set to gather at the event and show off their latest products, designs and ideas.

This year, Nampo is set to build upon the event’s success. In total, the attendance at Nampo is expected to reach up to 80 000 people over four days. Grain SA has secured the support of more than 700 exhibitors.

The show continues to attract international attention with exhibitors from Canada, the United Kingdom (UK), Russia and India. This year, for the first time there will be a Canadian pavilion. The regular international exhibitors from countries such as Argentina, Israel, France, America and Italy will also be present.

Speaking on the progress that has been made over the last decade, Venter explains that he doesn’t see the 2017 event as necessarily being bigger, but rather better with more accommodation, better regulations and more parking.

“The strict rules of the event are part of its success, but this year I want to follow a more ‘open-door’ approach,” says Venter.

“The Harvest Day committee makes the rules and sets the policies. Members of the committee have years of knowledge and experience with Nampo. They are also my key personnel who work the week before and during Nampo,” explains Dirk Strydom, manager of grain economy and marketing at Grain SA.

The theme of the exhibition this year is “Unfold the Future”. According to Strydom, the theme reflects Grain SA’s desire to ensure Nampo Harvest Day is the best platform and marketplace to provide the agricultural industry with innovation, technology and information.

NEW DEVELOPMENTS

In terms of new and exciting features and products, the existing 4×4 track will be upgraded this year, and there are plans for a new track for quads and “side-by-sides”.

The tent-hotel will be moved closer to the area in which the highly anticipated crowd-favourite plough competition is held. This development will be supported by a new ablution block, specifically built to service the tent-hotel and surrounding area.

This year, the youth show will take place in the mornings at the cattle/horse arena. More exhibits are being developed, which will be placed around the main entrance and the memorial wall. Extensions are also being made to the sites around the seed plots.

There will once again be a programme for women in a tent close to the tea garden and there are several more exhibits aimed at women in the industry.

Toit Wessels, assistant manager: marketing and Nampo, says: “There is a substantial need for the women’s programme, as wives and daughters accompany their husbands and fathers to Nampo for the day. The women’s programme is available only in the morning from 09:30 to 13:00, after which they can visit the exhibitions and the tea garden.”

Challenges

Planning an event the size of Nampo brings many challenges. According to Wessels, the first of these is providing accommodation close to Nampo Park. Due to the sheer size of the show, a minimum of two days is needed to visit all the exhibits. The accommodation surrounding Nampo Park is sparse and, therefore, the planning committee decided on the tent-hotel idea.

There have also been challenges in terms of sponsorship, especially in the current economic climate. Despite these, Wessels says he’s looking forward to the event.

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