FSR exhibitor focused on building cross-border trade
LONDON, OH -- International business and trade will be a key focus at the 2015 Farm Science Review, Sept. 22-24, with 17 Canadian exhibitors on hand looking to grow their market and establish new relationships with farmers and dealers in the U.S.
Of the 17 Canadian exhibitors who will attend the annual farm trade show at the Molly Caren Agricultural Center in London, Ohio, five hail from the province of Saskatchewan, where exporting is vital to local manufacturers and service providers' growth.
The Saskatchewan Trade and Export Partnership (STEP), an association based in the Canadian province that works to provide its members with global market opportunities, will call 755 Wool Ave. home during the show in an effort to develop new international business relationships, said STEP Senior Director of Trade Development Rob Ziola.
Approximately 75 STEP members are agricultural equipment manufacturers, and most of these companies look to the United States for growth, he said.
"It is a very large market, as we all know, and we are close to it from a geographic, cultural, language and business familiarity point of view," Ziola said.
When choosing trade shows to exhibit at on behalf of STEP, Ziola said he makes decisions based on past experience, the shows' statistics and reputation among other exhibitors and show managers. The Farm Science Review ranked high in each category and is also located in a geographic area where STEP members want to expand their reach, he said.
"The Farm Science Review allows us to approach that Great Lakes area and find new intermediaries to do business with, such as distributors, representatives and dealers, while also generating direct sales leads from farmers in the states that the show attracts," he said.
STEP's goal of forging business partnerships with both exhibitors and attendees during the Farm Science Review, which is sponsored by the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University, is one that is echoed and supported by Show Manager Chuck Gamble.
"Most people only think of the exhibitor-customer relationships that are developed during the Farm Science Review, but the business-to-business partnerships are just as important and a vital part of our show," he said.
Once the show is over, Ziola said he will base the success of STEP's presence at the Farm Science Review on several different factors.
"We hope to generate a lot of retail sales leads to sell equipment to agriculture producers and find partners in the market who want to represent our companies going forward," he said. "Overall, we want to create exposure for Canadian-made equipment because it is high quality, well-priced with the exchange rate and very cutting-edge for today's smart farmer."
Advance sale tickets for the Farm Science Review are $7 at all OSU Extension county offices, many local agribusinesses and online at fsr.osu.edu/visitors/tickets. Tickets are $10 at the gate. Children 5 and under are admitted free. Show hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 22-23 and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 24.
Farm Science Review is known as Ohio's premier agricultural event and typically draws more than 130,000 farmers, growers, producers and agricultural enthusiasts from across the U.S. and Canada annually. Participants are able to peruse 4,000 product lines from roughly 620 commercial exhibitors and engage in educational workshops, presentations and demonstrations delivered by experts from Ohio State University Extension and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, which are the outreach and research arms, respectively, of the college.
For more information about the Farm Science Review, visit fsr.osu.edu.