This week plays host to the FTMTA Farm Machinery Show. AgriLand visited the venue, at Punchestown, Naas, Co. Kildare, in the run-up to the event – to watch the exhibition take shape and to get a sneek preview of what awaits visitors.

The show runs over three days from Thursday, February 9, to Saturday, February 11. Doors open to the public from 10am each day, closing at 6pm on Thursday and Friday and at 5pm on Saturday.

Up to 20,000 farmers, contractors and machinery enthusiasts from all over the country are expected to travel to the event.

By Wednesday morning, the day before the doors were opened to the public, many of the tractors and larger machines were safely in place, with exhibitors making last-minute tweaks and adjustments. There was plenty of painted metal to polish and shine. Smaller stall-holders were taking up residence in the many shell stands, which were dotted about the perimeter of the main hall.

Practically all of the major tractor and equipment manufacturers were present on-site; nearly 170 exhibitors will showcase their wares over the three days. All of the equipment on show is new; no used machinery is allowed into the exhibition.

Tickets can be bought on entry to the show at a cost of €20.

Travelling overseas

For those who don’t get their fill of machinery at Punchestown this week, the massive French SIMA show, just outside Paris, takes place from February 26 to March 2.

SIMA, like Agritechnica in Germany, is one of the largest indoor machinery exhibitions in Europe – if not the world. Its appeal has broadened over the years;  it now attracts over 1,700 exhibitors from 42 different countries. For the first time this year, there will be stand-holders from locations as far away as Indonesia, Taiwan and Thailand.

The organisers have also noted that more space is being reserved for manufacturers from Italy, the Czech Republic and, encouragingly, Ireland.