The last potatoes were planted at the end of April at PotatoEurope’s demo site and until the end of May the participation demands continued to come in. With less than three weeks to go, time for an update!
With more exhibitors, more space and more demo machines this year it looks like PotatoEurope 2019 is once again going to be a big hit. The ultimate potato event of the year takes place on 4 and 5 September 2019 in Kain, near Tournai (B).
Demand for exhibition space is particularly high this year. During the last Belgian edition of PotatoEurope in 2015 there were 193 exhibitors, which has grown to a grand 216 in the coming edition.
Important to notice: the fact that exhibitors are coming from 16 different countries (in 2015 exhibitors represented 12 countries), which just goes to highlight PotatoEurope’s international flavour.
This year again, there will be country pavilions from the United Kingdom and the Netherlands. Furthermore, organizers are very satisfied to see that all the different sectors covering the lifecycle of a potato are on offer.
The mechanisation, seed potatoes, services, phyto and fertilisation sectors will all be well represented, not to mention the storage and processing.
It is expected that the wider and more international exhibitor profile will also attract a more diverse group of visitors. In 2011 PotatoEurope welcomed just over 7.700 visitors, in 2015 this increased to 9.500, so maybe this year we can count on 10,000 potato lovers?
One key driver of PotatoEurope ever since the start has been the demonstration of harvesters. This remains the case, and the range on offer is now even greater.
This year 14 harvesters from 6 companies will be demonstrated; AVR, Dewulf, Grimme, Ploeger, Pouchain and Ropa will be showing both ride-on and drawn harvesters.
Nice to know for the visiting farmer, all working widths will be present: from 4-row, over 3 rows to 2-row and 1-row The harvesters will be grouped and demonstrated according to type. This programme will be repeated throughout the afternoon.
Not only that, but there’ll also be 5 storing lines from AVR, Bijlsma-Hercules, Dewulf-Miedema, Dubrulle-Downs and Grimme permanently on show.
Also of great interest at PotatoEurope are the trial fields. This year 8 companies have requested a trial field. These are planted in a central location so the visitor can easily find them.
Alongside the tests on different varieties the trials will primarily cover phyto and fertilisation.
Thanks to the participation of our partner Case IH / Steyr, PotatoEurope also aims to promote future technologies: one of the production fields will be cultivated by precision farming.
Variable planting, fertilizing and spraying based upon data delivered by drones, satellites, all kind of sensors, soil scans and yield maps... The results will be compared to neighboring a witness field.
This is all taking place at a site of approx. 33,5 ha in Kain, near Tournai. Once again Ets. Witdouck have supplied part of the land. This year some neighbouring plots have also been rented from three other farmers.
Kain is located centrally in the European potato-growing area and is easy to reach, as Tournai is at a crossroads of motorways coming from France, the north of Belgium and the Netherlands and east Belgium.
PotatoEurope Kick off
The evening before PotatoEurope 2019 opens its doors there will be an official opening with an evening of networking introduced by a PechaKucha presentation.
Some 10 speakers will face the crowd but they’ll have to make their point based on 20 images that they can comment in a short time laps.
It will be essential to be creative and “to the point”. The main subject is the potato but in all its aspects : starting at the culture, the harvesting, the trade, but even ending with the cooking and going over potato-art. Everyone is welcome but subscription is mandatory.
This networking evening will take place in the Theatre of the Institut Saint Luc in Tournai on 3 September from 7.00 pm.
Entry and Registration
At the cash desks, entry to PotatoEurope 2019 costs 15 euros. But tickets can also be bought on-line; the prize is then 12,00 EUR. Exhibitors will also circulate invitations.
As previously, visitors using these invitations should register beforehand. This is best done using the website www.potatoeurope.be Registration is also possible at the entrance, but with the inevitable risk of queues.
Organisation and sponsors
PotatoEurope 2019 is organised by Fedagrim, the Belgian Federation for Suppliers of machines, buildings and equipment for Agriculture and Landscaping.
Behind the success of this event is the collaboration between CARAH, PCA, FIWAP, who are responsible for supervising the growing programme and the field trials, and ILVO and CRA-W, who are working on the practical aspects of the machine demos.
This year seed potatoes have been supplied by AGRICO (Fontane) and HZPC (Challenger). Our processing partners MYDIBEL and LUTOSA will use the harvested potatoes.
CASE IH / STEYR and MDM INDUSTRIES are providing all trailers and tippers for this demo.
Finally SYNGENTA is our partner for the phytoproducts used during cultivation. ISUZU is our partner in transport of materials and personnel. A special word of thanks to the city of Tournai (Doornik) who has always been a generous partner in this marvelous event.