A new Demonstration and Innovation Day, aimed at showcasing some of the latest technologies within the agriculture industry, brought nearly 500 people to the Royal Welsh Showground this Tuesday, 19 March.
During the day, farmers, agricultural leaders, businesses and students benefited from over 40 exhibits of the latest technology available to agriculture, forestry and horticulture.
Bringing together universities, colleges, organisations and businesses from across Wales, the event will featured displays on telematics, drones, soil management, robotics, genomics, security, GPS, to name just a few. All aimed at improving efficiency and increasing production through ‘precision farming’.
Engaging the audience, the six guest speakers spoke inspiringly of the future of the agricultural industry, research, technology advances, efficiency improvements and educating the next generation;
Tim Bennett, Chair for the Centre for Innovation Excellence in Livestock delivered any excellent talk on building a centre to lead innovation for the livestock sector.
Next followed Alistair Taylor, Chief executive of the Institute of Agricultural Engineers, talking about innovation, technology and 21st century agricultural engineering.
Dewi James, Farm Manager at Coleg Cambria Llysfasi spoke about the role of education – training the next generation of Agriculturalists and Foresters in a rapidly changing world of technology advancement.
John Owen, project manager at Coleg Sir Gâr, next explained the slurry project, a de-watering system at Gelli Aur; using technology developed by Power & Water a Swansea based Technology Company.
Graham Higginson, Senior Engineering Lecturer at Harper Adams University delivered an inspiring talk on Agri-Tech for Arable Farming.
Rounding off the afternoon, Eirwen Williams, Director of Mentor Busnes talked about Farming Connect and how they are helping producers adopt new practices, benchmark performance, share ideas, address market needs and embrace innovation.
“Instead of the Annual CARAS Wales Conference, it was agreed to host this Demonstration and Innovation Day” explained Meurig James, Chair of CARAS Wales.
“The day has made it possible to some of the latest technologies that are available to assist farmers and the wider agriculture industry to be more efficient and increase production through ‘precision farming’.
“It really has been the perfect opportunity to witness new and affordable technology and innovation first hand and hear from industry leaders as we look towards securing the future of Welsh Agriculture in these uncertain times.” added Mr James.
CARAS Wales is the Welsh branch of the Council for Awards of Royal Agricultural Societies (CARAS), an organisation acting on behalf of the UK’s four National Royal Agricultural Societies, which recognises, through an awards scheme, distinguished achievement in agriculture and related land-based industries.
“This new event organised by CARAS (Wales) and hosted by the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society is focussed around the need for agriculture to produce more food in a sustainable way, with precision farming at the heart.” said Steve Hughson, Chief Executive of the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society.
“The guest speakers set the scene with expert presentations supported by the opportunity to see first-hand some of the latest technologies available. I am delighted with the success of this embryo event and thank everyone involved for their support.”