TALCA, Chile, April 28, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- IFT-AGRO '16, www.ift-agro.cl, began on a high note when Chilean president Michelle Bachelet cut the ceremonial ribbon and welcomed an overflow crowd of agricultural industry leaders and officials including the Minister of Agriculture and the Ambassador of the United Sates, and concluded its four-day run with enthusiastic reports of customer interest and positive sales prospects.
After a five-year hiatus, during which no exhibition devoted to agricultural equipment and food production was mounted in this fruit and vegetable powerhouse, IFT-AGRO met the expectations of its organizers and the needs of the nearly 5000 visitors who thronged the 8,000 square meter fair grounds in the heart of Chile's agricultural "bread-basket".
According to Ricardo Ortega, CEO of Kallman Worldwide-Latam, organizer of the four-day conference and exhibition program, a survey of exhibitors and visitors reflected widespread satisfaction with the broad spectrum of products on display and the information conveyed in the series of conferences and panel discussions that ran concurrently. Ortega noted the invaluable support of the leading agricultural association, Agricola Central as well as the Chilean Ministry of Agriculture in organizing the event.
Exhibitor workshops drew large crowds.
The three-day program of conferences and technical presentations consisted of 42 papers and panel discussions and drew standing-room only audiences, with a total of 2100 farm managers and food producers in attendance.
The survey disclosed that firms such as Massey Ferguson, John Deere, New Holland and Coagra met or exceeded their goals for the show. Many firms reported selling equipment from their exhibits at the conclusion of the show.
A random check on some of the U.S. exhibitors evoked the same positive responses. Tim Gavin of Triad Fasteners/DamGates sold his flood irrigation demonstration model to one visitor and will return to Chile in June to consummate a major deal. "It was a great show for us, with genuine interest and no 'tire-kickers,'" Gavin declared.
Typical of the exhibitor experience, Jon Englestad, International Sales Manager at Superior Manufacturing LLC, said he found keen visitor interest in his product: grain bins, hoppers and dryers, as well as his search for local sales representation.
John Yates, VP-Sales with Deep Root Distribution and his Spanish-speaking colleague, Freddie De La Cruz, were kept busy during show hours detailing the outpouring of new prospects. "We wrote at least five or six orders at the show and have a good deal of follow-up to do, " he admitted. Yates added that one contact was made with a government agronomist concerned specifically with hazel nut cultivation and his comments were "pure gold".
Direct sales were on the mind of Gene Rhinehart of Andros Engineering. He termed his participation "an exploratory effort getting to know the specific needs of the Chilean fruit and vegetable producers. We had a good turnout and met a lot of the folks we were aiming for," he added.
He sold one system to a tomato farmer as well. When asked if he was completely satisfied with the show, his rejoinder: "I was the second one to sign up for next year's show!" Enough said.
Ortega said that more than 7,800 square meters of exhibit and demonstration space were occupied by 97 companies drawn from 12 countries. A list of exhibitors may be viewed at www.IFT-AGRO.cl/exhibitors. In addition to Chile they included the United States, Canada, China, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Israel, Switzerland, Hungary, and The Netherlands. Visitor totals exceeded 4,700.
Tom Kallman, CEO of Kallman Worldwide, Inc, the stateside headquarters in Waldwick, New Jersey, had high praise for the AGRO team, noting that marshaling the cooperation of the many and varied agricultural agencies and interests all but assured the success of the inaugural event.
He disclosed that IFT-AGRO'17 would take place again in Talca from April 5-8, 2017.
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SOURCE Kallman Worldwide, Inc.