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Farmfair International brings cattle buyers and producers back to Edmonton

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Cattle producers are back in town in bolstered numbers for the world’s high-profile agricultural fair.

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The smell of wood chips and livestock wafted through Hall B of the Edmonton Expo Center Wednesday on the first day of Farm Fair International, an agricultural and beef cattle show that connects producers in western Canada with national and international buyers.

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Figures from Explore Edmonton, the city-owned company that hosts the fair, rank this year’s farm fair as the largest since 2017. Exhibitors have he prepared to showcase over 1,400 cattle entries, a 41% increase compared to 2021.

Exhibitors were grooming the best cattle ahead of several breed shows and exhibitions scheduled for the four-day fair.

While the regimen may seem suitable for dog and pony shows, fair director Leah Jones said it was “absolutely serious” for producers who use the opportunity as a platform to sell their wares. ‘It’s a business,’ he said.

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“This is like a beauty pageant,” said Jones. “They’re competing with their contemporaries, so all the fittings and grooming you see actually highlight positive attributes.”

Attracting overseas buyers

Jackie Payne of Lloydminster, about 250 kilometers east of Edmonton, brought seven cattle for display, including five Angus and two Limousin.

“You can feel the excitement in the air,” Payne said. “I’m happy that we’re all back together and doing what we love.”

In 2021, Alberta will account for just over 44% of Canada’s total beef cattle population, more than any other province, Statistics Canada reported in June.

Payne, who is a beef producer herself, said attending the fair as an exhibitor can be expensive, but given the international audience, it’s a significant part of her business’s advertising budget. Told.

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Appealing to buyers is also important, Payne said, which requires constant attention to breeding decisions and physical traits that may be desirable after four to five years.

“We are always striving to better ourselves and that is what makes the Canadian beef industry so cool,” she said.

This year’s fair will attract visitors and buyers from several countries, including Argentina, Australia, Austria, Mexico, South Africa, Norway and the United Kingdom, said Charlotte Wasylik, International Program Director.

“Each cow producer has something specific that they’re looking for: marbling or not, very fast weight from birth to weaning weight, and anything in between,” says Wazirick. said. “Everyone has their own idea of ​​the perfect animal, and there will never be a perfect animal for everyone.”

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Over the past decade, Farmfair International has facilitated $11 million in cattle and genetic material sales, Wasylik said.

Career fair for young people

The fair focuses not only on cattle, but also on the careers of young people, especially those who have a future in agriculture.

A small career fair within the fair, held Saturdays in the Expo Center ballroom from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. It is meant to connect. Event Manager He Kalyn Van Horn said.

“There is a lot of science and technology involved in both crops and animals,” she said, adding that skilled jobs such as construction, plumbing and electrical installation are also on site.

Alberta has one of the highest rates of farm succession plans among Canadian provinces (second only to Saskatchewan), but only 14% had plans, Statistics Canada said. said.

hissawi@postmedia.com

@hamdiissawi

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Farmfair International brings cattle buyers and producers back to Edmonton

Source link Farmfair International brings cattle buyers and producers back to Edmonton

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